YMCA and YWCA combined

YMCA and YWCA in Denmark is a joint Christian movement for youth empowerment.

We offer activities for children, young people and families in local communities, festivals and camps all over Denmark, and we are a part of the global communities of YMCA and YWCA.

The movement has more than 9.000 members in Denmark.

Everyone is welcome

YMCA and YWCA in Denmark is an ecumenical children’s and youth organization rooted in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark. However, you don’t have to be a Christian to attend our programs and activities.

Everyone is welcome, regardless of religious beliefs, nationality, race, gender, opinions or social position.

Activities

YMCA and YWCA in Denmark have more than 9.000 members. Our core activities aim at children and young people between 6 and 19 years. We also have programs for younger children and adults. We have 150 local associations spread across the country.

The YMCA and YWCA in Denmark is a member of World Alliance of YMCAs and World YWCA as well as the European level, YMCA Europe and YWCA in Europe.

The Y – Family

In many countries YMCA and YWCA are to separate organizations, but in Denmark YMCA and YWCA merged into a joint movement in 1976. The movement is governed by a female and a male president and a board with equal representation of men and women.

Many YMCA and YWCA activities in Denmark have from the early days been organized in separate organizations and still remain so – as YMCA Sports, YMCA Scouts, YWCA Girl Guides, YWCA Social Work, YMCA Social Work etc.

In total 8 independent organizations belong to the “Y-family” including Y’s Men Region Denmark.

Christian Identity

As a Christian organization we are rooted in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark. However, we work from an ecumenical point of view and support a positive, open minded approach to Christianity.

The theological point of view of YMCA and YWCA in Denmark is explained through 7 statements. Together, these statements show how we think about being a Christian community, how we wish to meet one another within the organization, and how we wish to relate to the world in general:

  • [You and YMCA and YWCA] You, God, and the world are connected!
  • [You and God] Believe in God – He believes in you!
  • [You and yourself] You are valued just for being you!
  • [You and us] Be yourself – also with others!
  • [You and others] Difference is a resource!
  • [You and the world] Be responsible – and make a difference in the world!
  • [You and the Bible] The stories of the Bible are old sources to new life!

Activities

The YMCA and YWCA in Denmark hosts a wide range of activities aimed at different age groups. Most activities target children and youth, but we also have programs for adults and families.

Program activities include leadership training, Christian education, Ten Sing, international exposure and solidarity work, festivals, summer camps, and club activities for children and youth.

Camps

The camps are a great opportunity for meeting new people in the organization. Every year we host 5 camps for grand parents and their grandchildren. And during the summer various local and regional groups will host children and youth camps as well as family based summer camps for more than 1.000 participants.

Children’s and youth programs

Many of our local organizations offer activities for children and teenagers. Here, the youngsters can meet on a weekly basis under supervision from a leader. Some of these clubs offer the same kind of activity each week, like Ten Sing. Others shift between activities like games, quizzes, Christian education and races.

We have developed various materials to aid in telling the Biblical stories in ways relevant to young people. For example, we have Bible Bricks, where children engage themselves with the Biblical stories and characters through LEGO. 

Adults and families

Although YMCA and YWCA focuses its activities on the young, adults also have plenty of opportunities to participate in events.

We offer various seminars and other forms of gatherings where grown-ups can meet each other, discuss relevant topics, and share their Christian beliefs.

Some seminars focus on strengthening leadership skills in order to develop even more engaging activities for the young back in the various local groups. Some activities are dedicated single parents, and some are focused on women only.

International Projects

Being a member of the world’s two largest youth movements is a crucial part of our identity, and our international commitment is an expression of fellowship and solidarity with other members of the international Y family.

Outreach and solidarity

Each local association has pledged to pay DKK 10,- per member, and these funds are used for emergency solidarity assistance e.g. in case of natural disasters where local or national YMCA’s or YWCA’s appeal for assistance.

The Palestinian issue remains a concern to YMCA and YWCA in Denmark due to our relationship with our YMCA and YWCA partners in the Palestinian territories. We continue to be involved in advocacy work and to send participants on exposure trips through the Journey for Justice program and other delegations.

International programs

From 2008-2014 we worked on a development project in India, with the aim of creating education for HIV-positive women as well as establish a ‘café’ for children where they could get help with their homework.

In 2014-2018 YMCA and YWCA in Denmark is engaged in the project 'Minglabar Myanmar', which is an awareness and training programme for volunteers in Myanmar.

Read more on Minglabarmyanmar.dk