The YMCA (YMCA) is an international youth organization founded in London in 1844, offers its services today in more than 125 countries worldwide and has 45 million members. The YMCA Thessaloniki (www.ymca.gr) operates as an Association charitable, non-profit organization and managed by volunteers 24- member council, elected by about 1,000 regular members. The aim, which the brotherhood is struggling to accomplish, is the equal and proportional development of its members’ Soul, Spirit and of course of their Body, through a procedure that will ensure the smooth socialization of young people.
In Thessaloniki, having completed 96 years of social work and volunteer work has helped include the development of sport in the creation and promotion of the camping spirit, to solve social problems, to the training of young people and adults and creative leisure. The programs involved over 15,000 young men and women and therefore justifiably considered one of the most vehement of the country youth organizations. Constantly develops quality activities and innovative programs in various fields such as sports, training, camps, culture and social contribution, taking care always to meet the needs of young people. The activities held in the facilities of the YMCA are mostly and basically addressed to the young people and this is the main reason why the referring programs are formulated in such a way, in order to be applied to their needs.
It is of higher importance for the people working in the YMCA to further enhance and promote the significance of the pedagogical meaning and side of the athletics, so as to provide the necessary moral values via the assistance of team spirit, fair competition, systematic work, friendship, solidarity, fellowship and voluntary offering to the society.
In 1994 the construction of the emblematic building, that it is currently being utilized as the installations of the YMCA, began. It is the first construction of such large scale dimensions that was built outside the walls of the old city of Thessaloniki. In the yard of the building, mentioned above, was created the historical outdoor basketball court, which for many decades constituted the reference point for the game of basketball not only in the city of Thessaloniki, but also for the rest of Hellas. The YMCA, beyond the central building and the sports facilities in the city center, has two annexes, one in Kalamaria and one in Asvestochori. It also has a camp in permanent facilities in St. John Pelion, in Agios Nikolaos Chalkidiki and Florina.
YMCA’s social action…
In 2010 the YMCA stays close to the needs of modern society recommends organizational structure, Social Action, to intensify the management of social issues and awareness of all participants in its programs in volunteering and community service. YMCA is its people. Although they are themselves members in a society that suffers from the consequences of modern crisis at all levels, resist and reciprocate the trust and affection shown by citizens in the organization for about a century. People YMCA seek conditions for social action and for supporting vulnerable groups and for environmental sensitivity, organize outlets positive management difficulties through educational programs and volunteer and foster a responsible attitude of the volunteer. Thereby create multiple benefits for the individual, the group, the recipient, the volunteer.
In 2011 organized the YMCA States Congress to gather views for the elaboration of the next decade strategy. Since 2011 YMCA is a founding member of the network of voluntary organizations thess.diktyo Thessaloniki.
In 2013, Thessaloniki, Youth Capital 2014 entrusted the organization of the Conference on Volunteerism and Social Contribution entitled “Gives generously, I feel positively” with main speaker Professor Charidemos Tsuka ‘The ethics of responsibility in Greece of bankruptcy” The development of environmental awareness and growing sensitivity to environmental issues affecting our city was a basic goal of Social Action in recent years. In 2011 organizes the “I am a citizen and not simply Resident” in cooperation with the Deputy Mayor of Environment and Quality of Life of Thessaloniki and activates young to participate as volunteers in cleaning public spaces, tree planting, and to highlight problems of the urban environment city. Additional is organizing awareness-raising events for the environment, such as within the celebration of World Environment Day and actively participate in events other voluntary bodies. The promotion of the value of volunteering for environmental protection in younger ages was the main idea of the Training Program (project) organized in 2012 with the donation of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation and was entitled “The Young Volunteers for the Environment”. The project involved the production of books and cd with author-illustrator.
Constant care remains the development of volunteering in all aspects of the Association as concerning people or groups with specific problems or facing specific living conditions in the action “gives a smile / social action volunteers YMCA.” Events are organized by sections of all sectors of the Associations programs that offer joy and love and medications or books in social institutions such as ARSIS, PRAXIS, DOCTORS OF WORLD, SMILE OF THE CHILD, ELEPAP, CHILDRENS VILLAGE SOS, GREEK CHILDREN’S VILLAGE linden, MAKE A WHISH AND SPECIAL SCHOOLS, COMPANY SPASTIC NORTHERN GREECE etc. Every year about 1,000 volunteers are active in all areas of the Association.
YMCA’s basketball museum…
In a thrilling atmosphere the inauguration of the new basketball museum of the YMCA took place in the 8th of December, 2013. In the presence of all the important figures, not only of the field of basketball, but also politicians and representatives of public associations and of course the general public, some distinctive memories of an era that the team of the YMCA occupied the top placement in the first National League, were revived in the minds of all these personalities.
The museum existing in the installations of the YMCA, dedicated in the game of basketball, is the only museum of that kind that can be found in Hellas. The purpose of this museum is to provide the general public with the information needed about the brotherhood’s significant contribution to the development and spreading of the athletic education in Hellas. The museum is situated in the exact point where the first basket of the referring sport was placed.The great diversity of the different YMCA basketball teams that offered great winnings to the brotherhood, as well as rare exhibits, models of various athletes in their natural size but also electronic, dynamic platforms constitute the core of this innovative museum. Every visitor, through an interactive tour is given the chance to get informed about the history and the most important moments of this specific sport in Hellas. They can also learn some of the secrets of the game and the rules that are applicable to it.
History meets technology in the highly innovative basketball museum of the YMCA through modern applications. The original and cutting edge infokiosk that belongs to the museum it can be used in such a way in order to the visitor receive information concerning the sport as well as its history. An abundance of different interactive games dedicated to young people as well as to adults are also provided. In this way people share the chance to learn more about basketball with the contribution of technology.
Approved European Projects…
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