YOUNG MEN'S CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION
The YMCA, the oldest and largest Christian, ecumenical, association
It spread across 12000 local associations in 125 countries with 45 million members
YMCA was founded by Sir George Williams in London on 6 June 1844
Empowering the youth spiritually & culturally
The World Alliance of YMCAs was founded in 1855 at its first World Conference, held in Paris initiated by Henry Dunant, Secretary of YMCA Geneva
The Kampala Principles
The 6th World Council meeting in Kampala, Uganda, in July 1973, adopted at the same time the following declaration of principles:
1. To work for equal opportunity and justice for all.
2. To work for and maintain an environment in which relationships among people are characterized by love and understanding.
3. To work for and maintain conditions, within the YMCA and in society, its organizations and institutions, which allow for honesty, depth and creativity.
4. To develop and maintain leadership and programme patterns which exemplify the varieties and depth of Christian experience.
5. To work for the development of the whole person.
The Area committee of the Young Men’s Christian Association in Asia hereby affirms their common purpose and commitment of making a Christian contribution towards the enrichment of the levels of people and development of their Nations.
The aim to promote recognition and respect for human rights as defined in the United Nations Declaration and the attainment of social justice for all.
They seek to foster the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man as the foundation for world peace. (1977)
The World Alliance of YMCAs was founded in 1855 at its first World Conference, held in Paris. Each member YMCA is therefore called to focus on certain challenges which will be prioritized according to its own context. These challenges, which are an evolution of the Kampala Principles, are:
• Sharing the good news of Jesus Christ and striving for spiritual, intellectual and physical well-being of individuals and wholeness of communities.
• Empowering all, especially young people and women to take increased responsibilities and assume leadership at all levels and working towards an equitable society.
• Advocating for and promoting the rights of women and upholding the rights of children.
• Fostering dialogue and partnership between people of different faiths and ideologies and recognizing the cultural identities of people and promoting cultural renewal.
• Committing to work in solidarity with the poor, dispossessed, uprooted people and oppressed racial, religious and ethnic minorities.
• Seeking to be mediators and reconcilers in situations of conflict and working for meaningful participation and advancement of people for their own self-determination.
• Defending God’s creation against all that would destroy it and preserving and protecting the earth’s resources for coming generations. To face these challenges, the YMCA will develop patterns of co-operation at all levels that enable self-sustenance and self-determination.”
THE YMCA MOVEMENT IN INDIA
The YMCA in India took roots in what is now Kolkata, way back in 1857, though a beginning was made in August 1854
The National Council of YMCAs of India was formed on Madras on February 21, 1891 through the initiative of David McConaughy, who also became the first National General Secretary.
Azariah was the first Indian YMCA Secretary and K.T. Paul OBE, an associate of the Mahatma Gandhi, the first Indian National General Secretary in 1916.
Time-Line of YMCA in India
1857 : First YMCA in Asia is formed in Calcutta
1873 : YMCA Trivandrum established
1875 : YMCA Bombay established
1886 : YMCA Thrissur established
1888 : YMCA Kunnamkulam (Kerala) established
1890 : YMCA Madras established
1891 : National Council of YMCAs of India is formed in Madras and YMCA fraternal Secretary from USA, David McConaughy becomes the first National Secretary
1900 : YMCA Bangalore established
1904 : National Head-quarters shifted to Russel Street, Calcutta
1911 : YMCA Training School for Secretaries was started in Calcutta
1916 : K.T.Paul becomes first Indian National General Secretary
1918 : Sri.K.T.Paul coins the word “Rural Reconstruction” and the YMCA starts Rural Demonstration Centres
1919 : Sir.K.T.Paul establishes the YMCA Indian Student Hostel in London
1920 : YMCA College of Physical Education is started in Madras
1927 : YMCA New Delhi established
1931 : First High School Boys’ Hostel built in YMCA Boys Town in Tirupattur
1937 : 21st World Conference of the YMCAs is held in Mysore (the first in India and Asia)
1939 : YMCA Ernakulam established
1964 : National Head-quarters shifted to Massey Hall in New Delhi
1969 : YMCA Institute of Engineering is started in Faridabad with German assistance
1973 : K.M.Philip becomes the first Indian and first Asian to become the President of the World Alliance of YMCAs
1975 : National Head-quarters shifted to Bharat Yuvak Bhavan, New Delhi
1998 : Contemporary Mission statement of YMCAs of India is adopted at the 29th National Triennial Convention of the National Council of YMCAs of India at Madurai, Tamil Nadu