The YMCA’s international ties run deep within our organization and hold true to the original mission of caring and inclusiveness. Founded in 1886, the Summit Area YMCA has a history steeped in working side-by-side with our neighbors to ensure that everyone in our community has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive. Today, our South American population is one of our fastest growing population in the Summit Area. For this reason, our staff began a mutual collaboration with the YMCA in Peru that was very similar to our Y in the Summit Area.
In 2017, representatives from the YMCA of Peru presented this blanket as a gift to the Summit Area YMCA to highlight the importance of handmade textiles in Peruvian culture. It was woven from naturally colored sheep’s wool by local residents from the town of Ayacucho. In 2018, children from the Berkeley Heights YMCA Childcare program created a blanket to present as a gift to our YMCA Peru family as well!
On June 2 - June 8, 2018, a special team of Y staff from the Summit Area YMCA visited the YMCA of Peru in Lima, Peru to speak on topics regarding Membership Engagement, our Kid Zone and Afterschool Programs and meet their CEOs and Board of Directors and much more. Our President & CEO Paul Kieltyka said, “Summit Area Y is incredibly excited to make our first journey to the YMCA of Peru. We were delighted to host them in 2017, and are eager to not only share our YMCA best practices with them but to learn more about the Peruvian culture and YMCA values. We look to this trip as just the beginning of a long and mutually beneficial relationship between our two strong organizations.”
Read our blog below about our journey though Peru, filled with colorful pictures, stories and videos of our adventures!
The Learning Circle YMCA (TLC), a branch of the Summit Area YMCA, runs a special penpal program with the YMCA of Peru where students at TLC share activities, letters and culture with their friends in Peru. This program promotes global learning in our youth in both Peru and at home in Summit to broaden their horizons as they learn, grow and thrive in YMCA childcare programs.
To schedule a tour today with TLC, visit: www.thesay.org/tlc
For more childcare options, visit: www.thesay.org/childcare