Q: Are you related to the YMCA?
A: The YWCA is not related to the YMCA. The YMCA was founded in 1844 and focused on promoting positive values in young men. The YWCA was founded in 1855 to address the same needs but in the underserved female population. Of course, both organizations now welcome men and women with open arms, but have kept the original name of the organizations for purely historical purposes. Both organizations were started to address a need in the community so many of our values and goals for programs are very similar. However, the YWCA is a social service agency while the YMCA provides health and fitness programs for families. Yes, sometimes the line gets fuzzy but more than anything, both organizations support each other and work together to address the needs in our community.
Q: Is the YWCA a “social services” agency?
A: Yes, in the sense that the local organizations are major providers of services that meet women's needs. Depending on local programs, these can include: child care, rape crisis intervention, domestic violence assistance, shelters for domestic violence victims and their families, job training, career counseling, entrepreneurial training for teens, and fitness training. Just as important as the programs, however, is that the YWCA creates community among women, develops women's leadership in a supportive environment, fosters diversity, and brings about real change through advocacy.
Q: Does the YWCA provide health and fitness programs?
A: Some local associations have fitness opportunities as part of their programs to empower women. Each YWCA looks at its own community to determine its particular program needs.
Q: Is the YWCA for women only?
A: No, YWCA Enid provides services to men, women and children. For more details see Crisis Center information.