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Thursday, Apr. 28, 2016

YMCA adopts sex and violent offender policy

Monday, September 11, 2006

Diane Dierks photo

A group of men used the YMCA weight room. The YMCA of Clay County offers many services to the community including: weights, cardio equipment, aerobic exercise programs, tai chi classes, game room, community room and kitchen rental, children's sports programs, child care and adult intramural leagues.

YMCA history:

1844 - First YMCA founded in London, England

1851 - First U.S. YMCA founded in Boston, Mass.

1853 - African American YMCA established in Washington, D.C. by Anthony Bowen, a freed slave

1861 - Northern YMCAs establish the Army Committee, which becomes the U.S. Christian Commission, and distribute 1 million Bibles to troops during the Civil war

1879 - U.S. Indian YMCA established in Flandreau, S. D., by Thomas Wakeman, a Dakota Indian

1891 - Basketball is first played at a YMCA training school

1895 - The game of volleyball is invented at a YMCA in Holyoke, Mass.

1933 - The YMCA is released from welfare tasks when the federal government assumes direct relief programs

1940 - The YMCA assists in the creation of the USO (United Service Organizations)

1942 - The YMCA sets up clubs and camping for Japanese American boys held in internment camps during World War II

1950 - The game of racquetball invented at the Greenwich, Conn. YMCA

1961 - YMCA uses the first mobile pool to give swimming lessons to people unable to travel



The Clay County YMCA has adopted a sex and violent offender policy. The policy went into effect Aug. 17, 2006, and is designed to provide the organization with a means to screen members by using the Indiana Sex and Violent Offender Registry.

According to Executive Director Chad Zaucha, "The reason we put the policy in place was to be the best possible safety net to the community." The national YMCA recommends that all community YMCAs have a policy in case it is necessary to dismiss members.

Zaucha said that the Brazil YMCA already requires background checks for all volunteers and employees; adding the new policy will provide another level of safety for members.

The policy states, "The YMCA of Clay County will employ resources from the Indiana Sex and Violent Offender Registry to check whether prospective, current or renewing members are listed on the statewide internet registry. It would then be the prerogative of the YMCA to deny membership to any individual who appears to be a risk to the safety of others, especially children."

The first YMCA (Young Men's Christian Association) was founded in London, England, in 1844, as a response to unfavorable social conditions that arose during the Industrial Revolution. It was unique because it crossed rigid social class barriers and set the stage for future YMCAs to include "all men, women and children, regardless of race, religion or nationality", according to information provided by the organization's Web site. The Clay County YMCA was established in 1927 and has 3,200 members.

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