„YMCA Europe is a working fellowship to strengthen movements where people grow in body, mind and spirit.“


8th March 2021

“Women in leadership: achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world”. This is the theme of 2021 International Women´s Day highlighting that women´s key role at the front lines against the COVID-19 crisis.


As we join the celebration for the social, cultural and political achievements of women, we shall also be aware that still today millions of women continue to be discriminated in many different ways.

As a civil society organisation, the YMCA movement continues working to tackle discrimination, promoting gender justice at all levels.

At YMCA Europe we take this opportunity to show tribute and deep gratitude for the inspiring leadership to all female colleagues, volunteers and staff across our continent. We are also deeply thankful to the European YMCA movement for the continuous joint work in raising the profile of women both as leaders and beneficiaries designing and implementing the YMCA mission.

Here are some examples of women in leadership across the YMCA in Europe:

  • Within our YMCA Europe´s 9 Executive Committee members, 5 are females;
  • We have 8 staff members at YMCA Europe and 4 of them are females;
  • 11 women are National General Secretaries at YMCAs in Europe;
  • According to our 2019 “facts & stats” 55% of YMCA Europe´s projects participants are females;
  • Collectively 54 % of YMCA beneficiaries across Europe are females.

And we are proud to have our first female YMCA Europe´s President Emma Osmundsen, elected last November 20th, an inspiring example of women´s leadership as we develop of our new strategy for our Area Organisation.  

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