Celebrating Diversity, for All.

‘For all’ is a simple but powerful phrase. Without it, the Y mission is incomplete. Our commitment to inclusion creates better communities, a better country and ultimately, a better world.

Communities across the nation are changing rapidly and today, many are experiencing critical social divides. At the Y, we are uniquely positioned to build bridges in communities and create spaces for people from all backgrounds, walks of life and viewpoints to come together.

On a small scale, the Y’s initiatives impact anyone who is welcomed into a branch, but they stretch beyond the walls of the Y to improve quality of life for children, adults, and elders in surrounding neighborhoods—regardless of age, religion, language, sexual orientation, income status or background.

On a large scale, the bonds and partnerships that the Y has forged with other organizations in Central Ohio in the name of diversity serve to lift up the community as a whole. The Y recognizes the critical need for programs such as these to expand, for new ideas to surface and for the entire Central Ohio community to join forces in this important work.

In 2017, the Y operated the following programs and services to foster a more inclusive world:

  • Designated a Global Center of Excellence YMCA (Signifies that the YMCA of Central Ohio met the Y’s national standards for implementing behaviors and policies that make it easier for a diverse combination of people to call the Y home.)

  • Welcomed 350 Y Leaders from the U.S. and 10+ countries to Columbus for the 10th annual Diversity & Inclusion Global Innovation Network Conference

  • Hosted the New Americans Festival at the North YMCA

  • Participated in the New American Forum with other organizations around Columbus

  • Opened the New American Welcome Center at the North YMCA

  • Partnered with Refuge Columbus to host dinner series to build bridges, create safe spaces with refugees and empower local residents to be welcoming hosts to newcomers

  • Offered a Spanish-language Diabetes Prevention class at the Hilltop YMCA

  • Served parents and children with special needs and diverse abilities through Early Childhood Resource Network Plus (ECRN+) giving them access to the tools and resources they need to learn, grow and thrive

  • Continued to serve the Linden community with the YMCA Without Walls program, now in its second year


In coordination with other YMCA's across the nation and the world, the YMCA of Central Ohio strives to make the world a better place—for all.