2020 Community Impact Report
Building a community where all people, especially the young, are encouraged to develop their fullest potential in spirit, mind, and body.
There is no doubt that there has never been a year like 2020 before and with any luck, there won’t be one again. This complicated year has demanded great sacrifices from each of us and we're proud of how we have not only weathered the storm, but showed up for our community, and changed the way our kids, families, adults, and most vulnerable survived this pandemic. It is because of the commitment of our staff, board members, donors, volunteers, members, and friends that we were able to reach and show up for our community in every way.
View just some of the impacts the YMCA of Greater Seattle had in 2020.
When it mattered most, we showed up for our communities’ ever-shifting needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
We provided continuous child care and day camp, including emergency child care for first responders, to over 671 children of working families, ensuring they received on-going care and support while schools were closed.
We sheltered over 450 young people experiencing homelessness every night. In partnership with New Horizons, we provided safe day shelter for young people at the Downtown Seattle YMCA during the Stay Home, Stay Healthy order.
We served over 400,000 meals to low-income and marginalized individuals and families through our Hunger Initiatives, a 91 percent increase over 2019.
We supported over 7,000 seniors through Community Cafés and Healthy Aging events to connect seniors with services, help them stay up to date on COVID-19 resources, and maintain social connections.
Food banks have only been able to provide us canned goods, and we could not afford fresh items like fruit and vegetables. The Y has been a blessing to us as they have been able to get us the fresh food we desperately needed.
— Community Member
We formalized our commitment to equity and justice while building new communities of learning.
We established the Equity & Justice Center of Excellence with a $1 million seed designation from the Board of Directors and made a pledge to hold ourselves accountable to live our mission and weave the threads of equity and justice into everything we do. Learn More>
We pledged to become an anti-racist organization while reaching 234,170 people of all backgrounds, abilities, and financial circumstances with equity and justice centered programming.
We engaged over 2,100 people in conversation and learning through the Unleashing Potential for All series. Learn More >
In collaboration with the Ethiopian Community Center Health Council, we were able to create and pursue a strategic plan and provide support to 81 families and individuals in the Ethiopian community.
My 12 year old son watched the Unleashing Potential series with me as he is a huge Paolo Banchero fan and for him to hear his story and the stories of others of what they have been through led to some hard but good conversations in our house last night.
— Community Member
When it comes to housing and mental healthcare, there was no more urgent moment than 2020. We rose to the challenge and expanded our services to meet the growing need.
The integration of the Y and Nexus Youth and Families agencies was completed, forming a new entity, the Y Social Impact Center, to increase our collective support of youth and young adults. Learn More>
We opened three new facilities, Arcadia, Arlington Drive, and Roy Street Commons, to expand our housing and services for teens and young adults.
We served 1,627 people through behavioral health programs and expanded counseling services to people of all ages to address the growing need for mental health and substance use services.
5,481 unique participants were served through the Social Impact Center's Housing, Behavioral Health, Employment and Training, Violence Prevention, and Foster Care services.
My case manager was the best I have ever had and helped me gain many blessings!
— Miranda, Social Impact Center Program Participant
Health and wellness programs were more important than ever before in 2020 and harder to provide. We hit the ground running to make sure our members and the community had access to the care and support to stay healthy, prevent chronic disease, and help manage the effects of the pandemic on the body and mind.
We launched virtual workout classes and healthy living programs, and adjusted our in-person programming to meet COVID-19 health and safety requirements.
We expanded our virtual Chronic Disease Prevention programs to include community members to help more people take charge of their health goals.
We developed and started incorporating a Whole Person Health model into all aspects of our programming to support a healthy spirit, mind, and body.
We served 4,691 people in our aquatics centers. Our pools remained open for critical water safety instruction, wellness, and lessons.
I like the YMCA Prevent Diabetes class because it works! I am learning new habits I want to continue in the future. Since I started this program seven months ago, I have lost 24lbs and continue to lose more. My A1C is 1.2 points lower than it was when I started. I like the class material, we focus on a specific area each week and share ideas with each other.
— Diabetes Prevention Program Participant
It was a hard year for kids, separated from their school, friends, and social-emotional learning opportunities. The Y was quick to innovate to meet the needs of students and children.
We nurtured and empowered 96,009 children and teens to develop their gifts and give back to their communities.
We offered virtual learning programs to support academic and physical education needs and launched Y LEAP Academy, partnering with 11 school districts to support children and families struggling with virtual learning.
We safely offered 37 backpacking trips serving 269 teens through our outdoor leadership program, BOLD & GOLD. With traditional summer camping canceled, we activated our camps in service of the whole family. After months at home, 1,300 people filled 285 cabins over the summer.
1,284 teens were engaged virtually in service learning programs through YMCA Earth Service Corps and Youth & Government.
Day camp was a magical and important experience for my kids and is a shining example of how in-person education is not only possible, but beneficial in the era of COVID.
— Day Camp Parent
We are able to serve because we are made for and by our community. Thanks to donors, organizational partners, volunteers, and staff, we are building a better us.
$9.7 million was raised by donors and invested back into the community to benefit kids and families.
We engage 18,746 volunteers who contribute 344,196 hours of service each year.
We received a major, unrestricted gift from MacKenzie Scott to support our ongoing work. This gift means we can take a significant step forward in reducing barriers in access to healthcare and early learning for marginalized communities, increase access to the outdoors and our in-center programs, and invest in our staff.
We started the process of acquiring two new camps. Mineral Lake will be our first overnight camp in over 100 years. Camp Kilworth in Federal Way will offer day camp, family camping, events, and environmental education.
The Y community lifted me up and gave me hope. And here we are, it’s 2021, the fear, uncertainty and isolation of the last year is slowing fading. All through this time the Y has given hope, solid leadership and tangible resources. I’m proud and grateful to be a member of the YMCA community and support the Y’s work with my time and my resources.
— Barbara Peterson
We are forever grateful to our staff, members, donors, partners, and elected officials who stood by us this year to support equity and justice for all. This support manifests as an investment in the future we all want. One where all people, especially the young, are encouraged to reach their full potential in spirit, mind, and body.Download Full Report
Discover all of the ways you can make a difference with your time, investments, and more.
Many hands help community at the Y, from staff who counsel youth experiencing homelessness, and volunteers who help give out meals, to donors who empower the Y to reach more people in need. Learn more about your impact as a Y supporter.
Explore our blogs to learn more about our social services, read Y stories, meet our staff and members, and discover why the Y is a pillar of your community.