We have a YMCA being built in our area. I just discovered that our county footed the entire bill for the construction. While we need stuff for our youth, I am not thrilled that it has Xtian ties. It seems like a church/state violation to me. But... 
Apparently they claim they don't proselytize. I wanted to know if it's true. Does anyone know if they mention god or pray during their programs?

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Apply for a job there, I'll think you'll get your answer.
I hope there is an easier way to find out than that. :)

It hasn't opened yet but they set up a youth day camp this summer. (They sent a notification to my daughter's preschool school. I wasn't thrilled about that but since it's sponsored by the county it's not shocking that it's in the school. ) I didn't send her and she can't read yet, so she doesn't even know. I am sure though that after it is built they will have more activities and her friends will invite her...she'll want to go... I just want to know what I am in for if I do let her go.

Does anyone have any experience with YMCA programs?

I was a member when I lived in FL. I didn't notice anything overtly religious about the place. However, I only used the gym; I didn't participate in any programs. Try calling and asking them about their programs.

Thanks. Yes, it's been built now. When I went to discuss signing up I asked. She said that they don't pray or anything during any of their events. She said that at some of the YMCAs they have prayer groups (yuck) but they keep prayer out of the other events. She said that as far as she knew, there were no planned prayer groups at our YMCA (Hope it stays that way).

I did join and signed my daughter up for swimming lessons. We did a complete set of lessons and have started the 2nd set. So far, it seems fine. There are some Christian things on the walls that I could do without. But since there aren't a lot of options for recreation in my area, I think we'll keep going.

Thank you to everyone who responded.

Oh, wow. I just noticed the date on this thread!

I am enjoying that we have a Y in our county. However, I noticed yesterday that in the lobby of the Y/County Parks and Recs area (The left side is the Y and to the right is the county's parks and rec office. Our county paid for the Y, so I guess the building forms a dual purpose) is a bunch of bibles on the tables. I am not trilled with that - especially because it was built by our county and the building is partly for the county's use. I've considered complaining. Am I overreacting? Do they have the right to have the bibles there?

One of my best friends, a devout catholic recently quit the Y, after working there the better part of a decade. From what I can tell from seeing it from an insider's perspective, its a rotten organization. They prey on their workers worse than WalMart. The kicker is - when they're finally done with you, they force you to resign, rather than fire you. If we end up firing you, we'll never give you a positive reference for any other job. If you resign, here's a draft of the glowing letter of recommendation we'll send out on your behalf to every other prospective employer. 

They gave him an ultimatum, take a transfer/demotion to another Y, (he was 2nd in charge at our Y) and become the aquatics director at a Y up in Hampton Roads. They didn't pay for his move. His first week @ the new Y, he saved them $50,000 a year by finding a leak in the plumbing - they were adding a few thousand gallons of water a day to their olympic sized pool - fixed with a $150 service call to their local plumber. No pat on the back, no raise, no promotion. Saves a child drowning during an epileptic seizure, mouth-to-mouth, the works. Hailed as a hero by the EMTs and Firemen that showed up and took over... chastised by their legal department for taking unnecessary risks during the rescue... the list goes on. 

Its like any other Christian organization - all smiles and friendship on the outside, but a dark core, lurking just out of site. 

Another friend, who was the marketing director, (married to another Y employee) had the temerity to have twins born the first week of January, so he needed some time off as a new parent. Boss gave him hell for being away from work during the most important recruiting weeks of the year. He walked in, stuck 2 middle fingers in the boss' face and never looked back. Ended up moving out to Charlotte.

I believe it depends on the location and the people running the Y. I was a member at the Y in wilkes county for years, they were never really overtly religious - the only religion-esque thing they had was some kind of poster referring to "...your god given potential....". However, I also belonged to the Y in Yadkinville, and they did have little 3x5 cards on all the machines with bible verses. But I was there to work out, not read.... fortunately I had my music for distraction.




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