YMCA OF JACKSON AND WEST TN
FOR YOUTH DEVELOPMENT
FOR HEALTHY LIVING
FOR SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
"To put Christian principles into practice through programs that build
healthy spirit, mind and body for all."
The YMCA strives to put the following values into practice in all of its programs and services:
Caring: To be sensitive to the needs of others and go the extra mile.
Honesty: To tell the truth, have integrity and build trust.
Respect: To value the worth of every person and treat others as you would like to be treated.
Responsibility: To do what is right and be accountable for your behavior and your obligations.
History of the YMCA of Jackson and West TN
The YMCA was founded in 1844 by a group of Christian men in London, England. The YMCA was first introduced to the United States in Boston in 1851 and the Young Men's Christian Association of Jackson TN was formed in 1857 with a stated objective to improve the spiritual, mental and social conditions of young men. It was open to males under the age of 40 who were active in their churches. The founders of our YMCA were: Reverend A.W. Jones, J.T. Collins, Dr. John Chester, J.M. Monnell, Reverend O.S. Dodd, George D. Holmes, Howell E. Jackson, Sam C. Lancaster, John Blue, John L. Brown, Anton Shirle and J.L. Tomlin.
In 1901 the YMCA of Jackson was reorganized under new leadership. Nine years later, in 1910, they opened the first major facility of the YMCA in Jackson located in the 400 block of East Lafayette Street and North Cumberland. This was a three story building which included a gymnasium with a walking track around the top, dormitory facilities for young men away from home, an indoor swimming pool in the basement, a men's health club and meeting rooms available for public meetings. During the 1950's the Board made plans to move to a new Family YMCA to be located on 4 acres of land at 1515 Campbell Street where the YMCA has its corporate offices and a major facility today. In December of 2003 the name was officially changed to the YMCA of Jackson and West Tennessee.
The Haywood County Branch YMCA was begun in 1995 with funding from a Federal Empowerment Zone/Enterprise Grant for Haywood County. After a successful Capital Campaign in 1996 that raised $750,000 the Branch renovated facilities donated from the city of Brownsville and Haywood County. By August of 1998 the Branch had reached a total of 520 Membership units.
Northwest Gibson County Branch YMCA started with a community feasibility study conducted in 1996 which was followed by a founders Campaign in 1997 which raised $265,000 as start up funds for its operation. By 2001 community support grew to make possible a Capital Campaign that raised a little over $1 million dollars to renovate the facility, which was donated by the city of Trenton, in the industrial park.
In addition to the current branches of the YMCA of Jackson and West Tennessee, the YMCA of Jackson played an instrumental role in the start up and development of two other YMCAs in West Tennessee. They are the YMCA of Dyer County that officially began in January of 1996 and the Milan YMCA. The first several years of its existence the Milan YMCA operated as a Branch of the YMCA of Jackson.
The YMCA of Jackson and West Tennessee now operates branches in four counties across West Tennessee. In addition YMCA programs operate out of a number of other facilities such as elementary schools, school gymnasiums, housing projects, community pools, etc. We are also a partner in a number of collaboration with other organizations serving the community. We provide programs and service to people through West Tennessee excluding Dyer County and the service area of the Milan YMCA.