The YMCA is so much more than a gym.
The Y is at the center of communities across North Carolina.
Nearly 1 million North Carolinians count on the Y to connect to resources, relationships and opportunities to learn, grow and thrive. And many more benefit from the critical services our Ys provide during emergencies, such as hurricanes and the COVID-19 pandemic.
From the start of the pandemic in 2020 through the end of 2021, YMCAs reallocated resources and efforts to meet our neighbors' most critical needs, especially in the areas of food insecurity and child care. Today, Ys continue to meet the evolving needs in their communities.
2023 Statewide Impact
Each year, the NC Alliance of YMCAs highlights the collective impact of the 25 YMCA associations across the state. Our 2023 Community Impact data shows that our Ys continue to recover from the pandemic with increases in membership and program participation over the last few years. This is vital to enable YMCAs to offer a wide range of programs and services, and this revenue helps drive the Y's mission work.
From serving nearly 600,000 youth in programs to providing more than 1.6 million meals and snacks to them, the Y is often filling the gaps on nutrition for youth. We know kids need healthy food to grow and thrive, and often the Y is where our youth are accessing food. NC YMCAs' work statewide in fighting food insecurity continues to be incredibly impactful; NC Ys donated 1.7 million pounds of food, including more than 800,000 pounds of fresh, healthy produce in 2023. Children, adults and seniors all benefit from the Ys’ work in hosting mobile markets, backpack programs, food drives and even weekly Sunday lunches at one of the Ys.
North Carolina continues to be a leader among YMCAs nationally in collaborating with Medicaid insurers for membership and evidence-based health programs. The Alliance staff team had facilitated a statewide partnership with WellCare of North Carolina to provide its Medicaid members with Y memberships from December 2022-October 2023, and they are looking how to continue that partnership into this year. In the meantime, UnitedHealthcare Medicaid memberships have launched this year, which provides greater access to low-income adults and their families.
The Y's philanthropy work across the state also continues to rebound since Covid-19. In 2023, NC Ys provided more than $28 million in scholarships and financial assistance so that everyone who wanted to be part of the Y could do so and benefit from all the Y offers.
At the Y, we empower young people to reach their full potential. Through child care, education and leadership, camp, swim, sports and play, YMCAs provide opportunities for all children and youth to discover who they are and what they can achieve.
Scholarships and outreach provide critical assistance to low-income families, ensuring all children are able to participate in Y programs.
Being healthy means so much more than simply being physically active. Our Ys are committed to improving individual and community well-being through a wide variety of fitness opportunities, sports, social connections, evidence-based health programs and family-centered activities.
Our Ys connect everyone to the knowledge, resources, and community they need to lead active, vibrant lives at every age.
Bringing community together, providing support in times of need, and inspiring action in our communities is how we demonstrate social responsibility every day at the Y. We believe that everyone—no matter who they are or where they’re from—deserves the opportunity to reach their full potential.
Everything the Y does is in service to making sure people and communities thrive.