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YWCA Columbus

About

Background

What region or area do you provide services in?

The YWCA Columbus provides programming to women in Columbus. And the Family Center provides shelter to families from Franklin County who are experiencing homelessness.

How and when did the organization get started? 

In 1886, something extraordinary began when five women set out to find a home for Columbus’ first YWCA.They found a 12-room house, and offered shelter to 25 young women who had recently moved to Columbus and were looking for a safe place to stay. Over the years, the YWCA continued to grow.  By 1910, we founded the first public childcare program in Franklin County.  In the 1940s and 1950s, we pushed to integrate racially segregated housing at YWCAs across the U.S. In 1988, the Interfaith Hospitality Network (IHN) began as the second housing network in the United States and grew to include more than 120 churches. The system allowed homeless families to sleep on cots at various religious institutions nightly and the next morning, were bused back to a day center (400 W. Broad St.). By the end of the 1990s, YWCA Columbus had assumed 24-hour responsibilities in transporting the families and managing day services. By 2003, the YWCA began planning its new Family Center and successfully completed a $7-million capital campaign to build it.

How many employees do you have? 

The YWCA Columbus has over 200 staff members. About 90 of them work at the Family Center.

How many volunteers does your organization have? 

(click the “Service Projects” tab to learn more about volunteer opportunities)

The YWCA has about 5000 volunteers involved each year.