Youth Potential - Y-Guides
CONNECTING DADS AND KIDS
With our hectic and busy lives, dads and kids don’t often get designated time together to develop their unique bond. Y-Guides celebrates the vital role that fathers play in the growth and development of their children. At its core, the Y-Guides program provides the framework for dads and kids to share entertaining, age-appropriate activities in local tribes with uninterrupted time to connect, tune into needs and show pride and affection.
Building a Legacy
The Y-Guides program was founded in 1926 by St. Louis YMCA director, Harold Keltner. Originally created to support and encourage a father’s vital role as teacher, counselor and friend to his son, the program has since grown to include daughters. In 1958, the YMCA of Greater Charlotte launched the program with three tribes, and has grown to its current size of 185 tribes with over 1000 families and 2300 individuals.
Impacting Families and Communities
Aside from patches earned through activities and achievements, the lasting awards children receive are given through words and expressions of praise. A smile from Dad, a pat on the back or a word of approval from the Chief — all have real impact and meaning. The benefits to families and the overall community are endless and profound: fostering trust and respect, building self-esteem, improving social skills, and offering life lessons for the young and young at heart.
Investing in Relationships
Y-Guides is housed out of YMCA Camp Thunderbird, but its strength is its virtual location requiring little in the way of capital investment. Meetings are held in participant’s homes, and excursions are rented from Y camps and other venues. Continuous improvement and growth in providing wonderful ways for dads to invest in their kids is an ongoing goal of the program’s leadership.
Through the generosity of our donors, we provide scholarship assistance so that families in need can participate. A donation of $500 sends father and child to two weekends of Longhouse where they create lasting memories.