Woman wearing mask waving hand

YMCA Canada

2020 Annual Report

YMCA endures
Reflecting on 2020

2020 was a year like no other. Much of it was spent in a state of fear and anxiety, while life as we knew it changed in unimaginable ways. To stay safe, physical distancing, mask wearing, and reduced social contact became a necessary part of every day life.

The changes didn’t stop there. For many of us, events that took place over the course of the year also opened our eyes and hearts to how others experience the world. What became clear was that COVID-19 is more than just a health crisis. It’s been a crisis of disparity, highlighting the economic, racial, gender, and identity inequities that exist in our society. In the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd and with the rise in anti-Asian hate crimes, the overt and covert racism plaguing Canada and the world can no longer be denied.

At the YMCA, we know this is not the Canada We Want. The Canada We Want is a place where oppressive and systemic barriers have been removed and replaced by opportunity. And we know a lot more work, by a lot more people and organizations, including ours, is needed to get us there.

Not surprisingly, 2020 slowed our progress as the ongoing pandemic took its toll. We had to make tough decisions to ensure we remain financially sustainable, especially now, when charities like the YMCA are needed more than ever to help recover from the pandemic. But even as we struggled, we never stopped working toward our goal, with every YMCA across the country mobilizing quickly to answer the question, “How can we help”?

In this year’s Annual Report, we place a spotlight on some of the ways YMCAs supported their communities during an incredibly challenging period. These examples represent the greater story of how the people who make up the YMCA helped others, while demonstrating leadership, empathy, and resilience throughout what is likely the most difficult times we have ever known.

In sharing the YMCA’s impact in 2020, we must give our sincerest thanks to our staff, volunteers, participants, donors, partners, young leaders, guardians, advocates, and YMCA Member Associations. You have added a chapter to the YMCA legacy that will be admired for years to come. Because of people like you, the YMCA has been there for Canadian communities for over 170 years. And because of you, the YMCA will continue to be here long after this pandemic is over.

Marcel Lauzière

Marcel Lauzière

Chair, National Board of Directors

Peter Dinsale

Peter Dinsale

President & CEO, YMCA Canada

Since first coming to Canada in 1851, the YMCA has survived some of the greatest challenges to ever face our nation, including World Wars, natural disasters, economic crises, and much more. Through it all, the heart of the YMCA has never changed.

As part of our 2020 Annual Report and broader YMCA story, we are pleased to share the following video, which reflects on this extraordinary moment in time.

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Emergency Child Care

When the pandemic first hit in March, most organizations had to close their doors, including child care centres. Yet without a safe place for their children to go, a lot of essential workers would not have been able to do their jobs as doctors, nurses, and emergency responders. At many YMCAs across Canada, emergency child care was provided for these frontline heroes. It was our honour to keep their children safe as they kept us safe.

Hear from Cathy Poole, VP, Children and Youth Services, and Hazel Noronha, Team Lead, Early Years Child Care, about their experience in launching YMCA Emergency Child Care at the YMCA of Greater Vancouver.

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Food Security

With the shutdowns caused by COVID-19, a significant number of people unexpectedly found themselves out of work. Unfortunately, growing numbers of Canadians also found themselves in situations where they struggled to afford food. In response, YMCAs throughout the country sprang into action, partnering with other community agencies to hold food drives, deliver food boxes, and use their buildings for distribution.

Hear from Kristen Wheaton Clayton, Chief Development Officer, YMCA of Greater Saint John, about their Y Home Delivery Program, which arranges for volunteers to pick up essential food/items from food banks and deliver them to those in need for free.

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Homeless Supports and Shelters

With YMCA Health, Fitness, and Aquatic buildings closed, several YMCAs were able to work with community partners to offer their facilities to support the homeless population throughout the pandemic, especially during the colder months. Whether making their shower amenities available, or offering pop up shelters and warming centres, these Ys provided much needed safe spaces to vulnerable residents.

Hear from Kendra MacIsaac, General Manager of Health, Fitness & Aquatics, YMCA of Northeastern Ontario about how they transformed the Sudbury YMCA into a warming centre.

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Virtual YMCA Experiences

The heart of the YMCA lies in bringing people together. But when we could no longer do that in-person, YMCAs quickly pivoted to moving the YMCA experience online. From virtual appointments for employment and newcomer services, to Facebook Live fitness classes, Y staff found ways to ensure people could stay healthy and connected.

When a principal in Edmonton, Alberta recognized that her staff were showing signs of stress, worry, and burnout, she encouraged them to participate in YMCA at Home’s 7 Day Challenge. Hear from Amy Komarniski, Centre Manager, Northside Community Centre at the YMCA of Northern Alberta about the impact virtual fitness options had on this group of teachers.

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Launching New Programs

COVID-19 changed so many things, from our daily routines to new public health measures that limited in-person programs. But recognizing that there were still significant needs in the community, YMCAs looked for innovative ways to help. While many new virtual offerings sprang up, new in-person programs were also being created.

The YMCA Adventure Club from the YMCA of Niagara is one such example. Partnering with other community agencies, YMCA Adventure Club is a referral-based program for children who are at-risk or in vulnerable situations. Hear from Carly Milani, Child/Youth Program Coordinator, about the impact of this program.

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YMCA Staff Rise Up

YMCA staff are special people who share a commitment to making their community a place where everyone belongs. In 2020, COVID-19 took its toll, with unprecedented layoffs, and for those still working, an environment of uncertainty and an unknown future. Despite everything, YMCA staff rose to the occasion, responding to this moment in history with action-oriented solutions. Whether learning new skills to take programs virtual, reimagining spaces to adhere to public health requirements, or delivering essential in-person programs, YMCA staff gave us all something to be proud of.

Sophie, from the YMCAs of Quebec, is a shining example. Laid off from her job in the YMCA’s communications department, hear how she still found the power to make a difference.

As at December 31, 2020

2020 2019
Current Assets
Cash and cash equivalents $2,279,626 $1,577,459
Accounts receivable 911,648 679,313
Prepaid expenses 58,512 80,367
3,249,786 2,337,139
Investments 19,708,655 18,662,231
Accounts receivable 219,779 400,888
Capital assets 47,947 65,041
Intangible assets 21,798 2,775,811
Other long-term assets - 58,169
$23,247,965 $24,299,279
Current Liabilities
Accounts payable and accrued liabilities $1,275,545 $772,862
Deferred contributions 416,798 228,278
1,692,343 1,001,140
Deferred capital contributions - 2,265,558
Deferred lease inducement 13,166 32,916
$1,705,509 $3,299,614
Net Assets
Endowments $16,535,113 $15,580,786
Board restricted reserves 3,752,367 3,327,447
Unrestricted 1,185,231 1,093,666
Investment in capital and intangible assets 69,745 997,766
21,542,456 20,999,665
$23,247,965 $24,299,279

For the year ended December 31, 2020

2020 2019
Allocations from YMCA Member Associations $4,646,299 $9,591,322
Amortization of deferred capital contributions 2,265,558 12,284,767
Government grants 626,192 7,000
National meetings and conferences 2,231 212,176
Dividend income 968,761 693,563
Recoveries from YMCA Member Associations 583,714 602,016
Foundation and other grants 64,209 286,614
Miscellaneous income 133,639 231,361
$9,290,603 $23,908,819
Salaries and employee benefits $2,333,664 $3,515,673
Purchased services 1,508,985 2,173,530
Travel and meetings 247,644 1,134,128
YMCA Lead and other Member Association agreements 191,177 801,476
YMCA Resource Development Centre dues 1,087,304 1,780,741
YMCA Resource Development Centre support 164,665 244,552
Communications 716,334 702,425
Uncollected Member Association charges 165,835 -
World YMCA services 105,389 376,067
Rent and office 154,651 266,157
Licence fees 36,244 304,356
Affiliations, professional services, and insurance 146,344 133,949
Amortization of capital and intangible assets 551,930 530,096
Impairment of intangible assets 2,140,448 14,666,622
Grants distributed 64,209 237,418
$9,614,823 $26,867,190
Deficiency of revenue over expenses before the undernoted (324,220) (2,958,371)
Change in fair value of investments 597,745 1,276,260
Excess (Deficiency) of revenue over expenses for the year 273,525 (1,682,111)
Interfund transfers (181,960) 1,468,648
Increase (Decrease) in unrestricted fund balance 91,565 (213,463)
Beginning unrestricted fund balance 1,093,666 1,307,129
Ending unrestricted fund balance $1,185,231 $1,093,666

A full set of audited YMCA Canada financial statements is available on our website.


Marcel Lauzière - Chair

Mary Beck - Vice Chair

Laurie Skinner - Vice Chair

Immediate Past Chair

Brenda Flaherty


Mostafa Abd El Meguid

Colleen Albiston

Daniel Boisvert

Nicole Callihoo

Sourov De

Neil Desai

Daniel Doiron

Tyril Froese

Ruhee Ismail-Teja

Leanne Standryk

Wan-Peng Sun

Bruno Suppa

Mary Williams

YMCA Canada Partners

Thank you to the following private, public, and non-profit organizations that have collaborated with us in 2020, helping us to fulfill our mission over the past year.

Alliances, Coalitions, and Associations

Chronic Disease Prevention Alliance of Canada

Cooperation Canada

Public Policy Forum

Partners in Building a Healthier Canada

BGC Canada

CIBC Youthvision Scholarship Program

Employment and Social Development Canada

Imagine Canada

Lifesaving Society of Canada

Loblaws Inc.

The Students Commission of Canada

Unicef Canada

United Way Centraide Canada

Global Partners

As part of our commitment to the YMCA global movement, YMCAs in Canada have been working collaboratively with partners in the YMCA global network for more than a century. The following is a list of our current global partners.

National Office Partners

Africa Alliance of YMCAs

Asia and Pacific Alliance of YMCAs

Latin American and Caribbean Alliance of YMCAs

World Alliance of YMCAs

YMCA Europe

YMCA of the USA

YMCA Member Association Partners


YMCA of Ethiopia & British Columbia YMCAs

YMCA of Ghana & YMCA of Greater Toronto

YMCA of Liberia & YMCA of Greater Toronto

YMCA of Senegal & YMCA of Greater Toronto

YMCA of Sierra Leone & YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka

YMCA of South Africa & YMCA of Niagara

YMCA of Zambia and the YMCAs of Three Rivers and Hamilton/Burlington/Brantford


YMCA of Ukraine & YMCAs of Calgary, Northern Alberta, Brandon, and Saskatoon

Latin America and the Caribbean

YMCA of Bogotá, Colombia & YMCAs in Alberta and Saskatoon

YMCA of Medellín, Colombia & YMCA of Greater Toronto

YMCA of Risaralda, Colombia & YMCAs of Cumberland and Greater Moncton

YMCA Guatemala & YMCA of Southwestern Ontario

YMCA Haiti & YMCAs of Quebec

YMCA of Mexico City, Mexico & YMCA of Greater Toronto

YMCA Nicaragua & YMCAs of Central East Ontario, Eastern Ontario, and Northumberland

YMCA Peru & YMCA of Greater Toronto

Anonymous (2)
Greg Auld
Jennifer Babe
Drs. Baer & Cohen P.C.
Richard and Nancy Bailey and Family
Betty Black
Don Black
Dr.* and Mrs. Don Brundage
Jean Bruneau
Anne Buckley
Alan and Jane Burpee
Mollie Cartmell
Helen Corkum*
Lee Crawford
Franca D'Angelo
Russ and Keitha Davey
The Deakin-Thomas Family
Peter Dinsdale
Victor M. Drury
Paul Dunne
Ivan* and Evelyn Eaton
Blair Filyk
Brenda Flaherty and Brent Wood
Casey Forrest
Helen Francis
William Gallaway*
Mark Galonski
Deidre Green
Hamer Guest*
Scott & Linda Haldane
Rowley Hastings
David and Laura Hughes
Clarke Hunter
Ruhee Ismail-Teja
Marilyn Kapitany
Sol and Rachel Kasimer
Laura and David Korn
Henry and Jean Labatte
Marcel Lauzière
Al Lennox*
James MacGowan
The Madhani Family
Dr. John M. Magwood*
Mary Mansworth
Ray Mantha
Dave McBride
Don & Sue McCreesh
Don* and Peggy* McGregor
Sandy McIntyre
Howard P. Miller*
Richard Moore
Jack Mulkins
Patricia and Doug Pelton
Niels Petersen*
Mary Pollock*
Meghan and Andrew Reddick
Bill Rees*
Robert and Kathy Reid
Marty & Sharee Reynolds
Ted Robinson
George and Ann Rodger
Craig & Heather Rowe
Beverly Sawicki
Patricia Schneider
Murray* and Mary* Shantz
George Singleton*
Betty-Lou Souter
Daphne Spence
Bryn Styles
Don Tapscott
Pat Thompson and John Brewin
Harvey Thomson
Margaret* and Bob* Torrance
Catherine and Michael Van-Alstine Woods
Susan Waterfield
Michael and Judy Weil and Family
Wanda Wetterberg
Jennifer and Jeff Wilson
Wenda Yenson
Wynne & Tom Young
*In Memoriam

About YMCA

The YMCA is a powerful association of people joined together by a shared passion to foster a sense of belonging for all. In an age of complex social challenges, the YMCA is steadfastly dedicated to building healthy communities by inviting and encouraging Canadians to join in, to give back, and to gain the connections, skills, and confidence they need to thrive.

YMCA Canada is a charity and the national office of the Canadian YMCA Federation, providing support to 39 YMCA Member Associations. For more than a century we’ve been at the heart of communities across the country, serving evolving needs and providing vital community services.

For more information please visit ymca.ca.

View a complete list of YMCA Member Associations