A new name for the YMCA of Greater Montreal - The Ys of Québec: Reaching out and touching more people

    MONTREAL, Jan. 7 /CNW Telbec/ - The YMCA of Greater Montreal will now be
known as The Ys of Québec to convey new aspirations of development that will
enable it to serve more people. This new name better reflects the Y's
contribution in all areas of activity throughout the province of Quebec. The
name change takes effect immediately and is accompanied by an adjustment to
the business model and a new visual identity, logo, signature and Web site.
    "The Ys of Québec intends to become THE reference in well-being across
Quebec," said Stéphane Vaillancourt, president and CEO of The Ys of Québec.
"This change attests to our ongoing desire to evolve and to positively impact
the lives of people and families."
    While respecting the important work already being done throughout the
province by other organizations, The Ys of Québec want to get more involved in
various communities in Quebec. As such, the Y strives to remain innovative and
has adapted its business model accordingly. "Our aim is not necessarily to
build new Y centres, but to develop business structures that will allow us to
respond more quickly to specific needs in the communities. For instance,
independent organizations can manage and take charge of programs developed by
the Y. The Alternative suspension program is an excellent example. To date, we
have 11 service outlets in Quebec: six on the Island of Montreal and one each
in Quebec City, Joliette, Repentigny, Valleyfield and Longueuil. In some
cases, these service points are administered by partner organizations," added
Mr. Vaillancourt.

    The Ys of Québec: six areas

    To support these important changes, The Ys of Québec has also rebuilt
their Web site to make the Web experience more user-friendly. Site visitors
will see that the various activities of The Ys of Québec are now identified
under six main headings:

    - Community Initiatives
    - Children and Youth
    - Health, Fitness and Recreation
    - Education and Training
    - International Initiatives
    - Donations and Volunteering.

    It will now be easier to find information on programs or get an overview
of the services provided by The Ys of Québec. For more information, visit

    A new visual identity

    The new visual identity reflects the new aspirations of The Ys of Québec
and stresses its social mission, which goes beyond the idea of a gym. The logo
includes the "Y," which was retained because it is a distinctive
representation that has endured over time and because members have long used
the shortened name "Y," which is simple and easy to remember. The new slogan,
Fulfilling lives, is dynamic and refreshing. "Fulfilling" refers to the
development and enrichment that people gain in spirit mind and body. The idea
of "lives" represents all the people affected by the Y's actions and evokes
the idea of community.

    The values remain the same!

    The Ys of Québec are staying true to their roots and continuing to
embrace its five fundamental values:

    - Participation and accessibility
    - Education and prevention
    - Respect for others
    - Volunteerism and philanthropy
    - Personal empowerment

    "These principles guide our everyday actions and will continue to drive
our development," added Mr. Vaillancourt.

    Surpluses reinvested in the community

    As a social endeavour, The Ys of Québec reinvest all surpluses generated
by operations, such as fitness centre memberships, to benefit the community.
    A portion of the surplus is used to maintain and improve facilities that
include Camp Y Kanawana, the International Language School, a residence and
nine centres (soon to be 10 with the new Cartierville Y centre), as well as to
update equipment. This investment provides a place to house community services
and ensures the growth of community programs such as homework help and youth
zones. As well, the Innovation and Research Fund, which provides financial
support for new initiatives that meet specific needs identified in the
communities served, and the Access for All policy, which allows people with
low-income to use the Y's services, are entirely funded by the surpluses.
    The Ys of Québec can also rely on their Foundation, which provides
support and helps ensure their continued existence, notably through the growth
of its Endowment Fund and by running an annual campaign in conjunction with
the Y centres. The proceeds of this fund, as well as the funds raised during
the campaign, are reinvested into the delivery of services and community
    The main distinguishing feature of The Ys of Québec, particularly in the
fitness sector, is undoubtedly its philanthropic and social mission that
extends the concept of well-being. To reflect this, the slogan for The Ys of
Québec's next membership campaign will be Do good for yourself. Do good for

    About The YMCAs of Québec

    The first YMCA in North America was founded in Montreal in November 1851.
This charitable organization is dedicated to the development of people in
spirit, mind, and body, and to the empowerment of individuals, families and
communities. Every year, more than 100,000 people take advantage of its
community development, international development and child development
programs, as well as language courses and fitness activities at its 10
centres. The Ys of Québec are part of the Canadian network that comprises 54
YMCA associations.

For further information:

For further information: Katia Bouchard, Morin Relations Publiques,
(514) 289-8688, ext. 225, Cell: (514) 912-1838, katia@morinrp.com; Source: The
Ys of Québec

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