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


28th January 2021

33 participants from YMCAs across Europe met virtually on January 28th at the National General Secretaries Forum.

ngs forum

More than 25 national YMCAs were represented by their NGSs.

As YMCA Europe shapes its Strategic Direction, the meeting was a highlight in the process to adopt a new Strategy for the next period.

Our President Emma Osmundsen presented the direction of travel on behalf of the Executive Committee and as an outcome of the work done by our governance body over the past two months.

Emma highlighted the special and unpredictable context in which the next strategy will be shaped in order to respond to the needs to our member movements (National YMCAs) adding an extra value as an Area organization. Emma illustrated this direction by emphasizing priorities such as “Relevance, Representation, Relationship and Resilience” adding that “our strategic direction is aligned with World YMCA”.

We had two guest speakers responding to YMCA Europe´s input. Joe Elborn, Secretary General of the European Youth Forum provided an inspiring overview on Europe´s reality from the perspective of the main youth focused network in our continent.  Carlos Sanvee, Secretary General of World YMCA shared the vision and strategic pillars that are being designed by our global movement with the immediate highlight of the 2022 World Council and the planning of our common journey until 2030.

Updates about Communications, Movement Strengthening, programmes and governance related items were presented by Marius Pop (Director of Communications), Olga Lukina (Executive Secretary for Movement Strengthening) and President Emma Osmundsen.

All National General Secretaries shared in working groups with a focus on aspects that should be added to the Strategic Direction and ways in which this proposal could now be turned into a Strategic Plan to be adopted at the General Assembly in May.

Next steps include a wider and deeper consultation by regions involving the NGSs and other key stakeholders.

Our Secretary General Juan Simoes Iglesias thanked all participants for being part of this crucial process which will need a participatory and proactive approach from our colleagues.

Thank you all for being part of our collective European journey!

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