Horsham YMCA

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Horsham YMCA
Charitable organisation
Industry Education
Founded Horsham, West Sussex, England (1898)
Founder George Williams
Headquarters The Y Centre, Albion Way, Horsham, West Sussex, England
Number of locations
1
Key people
Peter Scofield (Chief Executive)
Owner Affiliated National YMCA
Number of employees
15(April 2009)
Website YMCA website

The YMCA in Horsham was founded in 1898 by a group of young Christian men to provide sporting activities for young people in Horsham. The town at that point was short of facilities and the YMCA provided recreational opportunities that included football, athletics, stallball, cricket, cycling, first aid, an overseas mission, libraries and Bible studies.

During the Second World War (1939–45) the YMCA in Horsham helped Horsham's people by providing care for Service personnel. This included the founding of a youth centre in North Street for young Canadians who were billeted in Horsham during the period.

Youth programmes continued until the sixties when the Boys Club opened in Hurst Road. The YMCA chose to concentrate on their football programme at Horsham YMCA F.C. and to expand their operations into other social concerns that affected young people.

Current operations[edit]

During the 1990s the Horsham District Council area faced a problem in meeting government targets for providing accommodation for young people. The YMCA at Guildford, a town about twenty-five miles from Horsham, provided an example of where the YMCA had effectively worked with a local authority. The facilities in Guildford included a restaurant and conference facility with programmes for the disabled and the very young. There was accommodation for 132 residents and since the opening of the Guildford YMCA they had operated a summer camp scheme with over 500 young people taking part, organised personal development trips to India, opened a Youth Café and Advice Centre with a doctor and nurse available 3 sessions a week. 23 youth workers were employed in schools, the local church, café and helping disaffected young people. A proposal was made to the YMCA in Horsham for a similar offer of services and programmes.

As a consequence of the alliance between the YMCA led by a former CEO Alex Cloke and Horsham District Council the YMCA provides 48 single flats for young people and supports this by a qualified staff partly funded by the Horsham District council. The new building, known as 'The Y Centre' was constructed under a Design & Build Contract by Dean & Dyball Construction Limited with Hurley, Porte and Duell as project architects.

In 2004 the YMCA employed staff directly to work on the Needles estate at the request of the council.

The YMCA at Horsham is autonomous as is the custom of the YMCA organisation. Each YMCA in England is affiliated to a National Body.

The CEO is Peter Scofield (CEO) and the Horsham YMCA employs fifteen staff to run the youth programmes and to continue work in the community.

External links[edit]