Celebrating Black History Month at the Y 


The history of the YMCA – like the history of the United States – is a story of incremental progress toward greater inclusion and equity for all. As we celebrate Black History Month, we invite local Ys to celebrate alongside of us by celebrating past leaders and engaging in opportunities to celebrate Black history! 


Black Leaders in the Y


Anthony Bowen 

A former slave and the first Black American to become a clerk in the U.S. Patent Office, Anthony Bowen founded the first YMCA for the Black community in Washington, D.C., in 1853, eight years before the Civil War. Additional Black Ys and college chapters were established in the following decades, with membership reaching 28,000 nationwide by the mid-1920s.


Learn about a few more Black leaders stories in this post. 


Visit the YMCA Archives to learn more about the history of Black leadership in the YMCA.

COVID-19 Y Facility Update 


Y facilities and programs are reopening following Gov. Brown's Reopening Oregon Guidelines. We've been carefully planning to reopen our facilities and reactivate key programs in the safest manner possible so you can access the services and support you need and miss most.


The way we'll interact with each other will be different, but at the Y, you'll always be able to connect with people, improve your health and wellness, nurture your child's potential and help strengthen our community.

Check your local Y listing for details


No matter who you are, or where you're from, the Y is a place for people who need us. We provide opportunities everyone needs to reach their full potential.

  • Facebook



Alliance Initiatives



Contact Us

Diversity & Inclusion

Donors and Partners

Find us on Facebook

Find Your Y


Privacy Policy


Youth Development 

Healthy Living 

Social Responsibility








Career opportunities



Our Mission: 

The YMCA is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to put Christian principles into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind and body for all.

Our Focus: 

The Y is a cause-driven organization that is for youth development, for healthy living, and for social responsibility. That’s because a strong community can only be achieved when we invest in our kids, our health, and our neighbors.

Copyright © 2020  Oregon Alliance of YMCAs