|The YWCA - Our Genesis & Background
|What is the YWCA?
The YWCA - Young Women's Christian Association is an international movement that unites 25
million women from over 100 countries holding a vision of a fully inclusive world where
justice, peace, health, human dignity, freedom and care for the environment are promoted
and sustained through women's leadership.
The YWCA is a set of autonomous community-based non-governmental organizations. As
non-profit membership associations, the YWCA is run by and for women of the community and
The World YWCA was founded in 1894 by four associations: Great Britain, Norway, Sweden,
and the United States. YWCA work had first begun in Britain when Christian women responded
to the housing, recreation, and spiritual needs of young girls who had migrated to the
cities during the Industrial Revolution. Since that time the YWCA has grown into global
movement of women that continues to meet the needs of women and girls in over 100
BY LOVE, SERVE ONE ANOTHER
Faith in God the Father Almighty and in Jesus Christ
His only Son, Our Lord and Saviour, and in the Holy Spirit
Promotion of the full development of women and girls through its programmes and to develop
a membership that is responsive through service to the changing needs of the community in
a changing world.
The YWCA of India:
An umbrella organisation affiliated to the World YWCA with 87 local associations in India.
The organisation works for women's empowerment through a variety of programmes , the most
important of which are leadership training for women, advocacy work on all women's issues,
and community development work . The YWCA also runs 40 women's residences across the
country providing housing for working women as well as emergency shelter for women. The
YWCA of India is also a part of a network of 7 women's organisations based in Delhi and
works together with them on common issues.
YWCA of Bombay:
The YWCA of Bombay was established just over 127 years ago with the goal of promotion of
holistic development of women and girls through its programmes and also to develop an
active membership that is responsive to the changing needs of the community in a changing
The YWCA of Bombay is registered under Societies Registration Act, 1860 under No.
44 dated 06-08-1952 and under the Bombay Public Trust Act, 1950 under No. F/388
(Bom.) dated 13-07-1953.
STATEMENT OF VISION AND MISSION:
The Vision of the YWCA is to empower women at all levels to struggle for justice. This
means moving into a Mission that is rooted in the reality of our country where people are
victims of economic and social injustice and are manipulated by socio religious and
political powers. This Mission demands a changing of structures that are hierarchical and
patriarchal, thereby encouraging equal participation of women at all levels. It also
demands a change in the structures and ways of working within the YWCA, breaking down
barriers of class and caste. A major focus must be awareness building, study and analysis
which must become necessary dimensions of every programmme in the YWCA. It is imperative
that the YWCA works with organizations with a similar Vision and Mission. Further it is
required of every YWCA member/leader to have a commitment to this Mission.
STATEMENT OF COMMITMENT:
We affirm and commit ourselves to empower women to demand justice and struggle against
social, cultural, economic and political injustices. As inheritors of the Christian faith
and heritage, we are called upon to be initiators of change through a process of
partnership in action. Consistent with our vision, our mission is to enable women of all
age, caste, class and creed to address issues, initiate action and generate alternatives
suitable to their local situations. We commit ourselves to sensitise our membership
towards the prevalence of violence against women and children, lack of participation in
the political will towards health care, educational needs and effective implementation of
To make our mission a reality, we need to open our membership to all women and network
with organizations concerned with human rights. Our mission includes advocating
attitudinal changes in family, society and promoting changes in State policies.