World Service

Community Roots, Global Reach

Did you know the YMCA is at work in 125 countries across Asia, Europe, Latin America, the Caribbean, the Middle East and North America?

The YMCA of Metuchen, Edison, Woodbridge and South Amboy — and more than 230 others across the United States — are committed to building international bonds with our partner Ys around the world.

YMCA of Grand Bahama

The Metuchen Branch YMCA partners with the Y in Freeport, Bahamas, providing financial support, staff exchanges and program development to help increase international understanding. We’ve been able to help:

  • Paint a gym that was destroyed by a hurricane
  • Train staff to teach swim lessons
  • Organize an exchange program for staff and campers
  • Certify lifeguard instructors for all the hotels
  • Open and furnish a halfway house for young offenders
  • Provide lane lines for the YMCA of Grand Bahama’s competitive swim team
  • Fund YMCA of Grand Bahama's staff to learn about YMCA professional programs at Springfield College in Massachusetts

The Bombay YMCA

Membership at the Edison Branch YMCA is over 60% South Asian, so it made sense to collaborate with a Y in India to offer an international experience for everyone. Thanks to a partnership initiated by YMCA Board Member Dinesh Karnani in 2009, members of the Edison Branch can benefit from exchange programs with fellow members of the Bombay YMCA in Mumbai.

Our partnership was made official in November 2011 when staff members and volunteers made a trip to India, visiting many branches of the Bombay YMCA. Since then, a number of exchanges have been made possible, including a trip made by eight Bombay Youth Ambassadors and two chaperones as part of the YMCA Global Service Learning Initiative. The goal of this trip focused on strengthening relationships and connections while providing the opportunity to give back and support neighbors near and far.

We look forward to continued work with our partner Ys — learning more about other people and cultures and making an even bigger impact on the larger Y community.