This past year was another challenging one for all of us, as individuals, organizations, and as a society. It was a year of shuffling and reshuffling as programs and services shut down and reopened.
Year 2 of the pandemic forced us all to become masters in the art of adaptation. If one thing was now clear, it was how fast the world around us could change. And, in turn, how we had to change to meet new needs, new habits, and new ways of living.
This year, we celebrated our 170th anniversary.
As we look back, we see how our story has been shaped by constant transformation and by our desire to meet the needs of communities.
As society evolved and social needs and issues changed, so did our programs and approach.
In 2021, we also started to see some of the pandemic’s longer-term effects: disproportionate learning loss from school closures, increases in homelessness, food and financial insecurity, substance abuse and mental health issues, and domestic violence.
As society struggles to address current needs, we must look to the future and prepare for the aftermath as communities will rely more on organizations such as the Y. This means focusing our energy on where we have the most impact. It means finding ways to take services outside our centres to increase access and adapt to local needs.
We can only achieve this if we are willing to change. So that the Y continues to be a place where people come to transform. As it has been for 170 years and as it is committed to being for the next 170!