Togetherhood – A Member-led Community Service program
Togetherhood invites Y members to activate their social responsibility by participating in the Y’s cause to strengthen community. Togetherhood provides Y members with fun, convenient and rewarding ways to give back and support their neighbors.
Togetherhood is the YMCA’s Signature Program for Social Responsibility. This program invites Y members to lead and participate in volunteer service projects that benefit the community where they live.
The program is run through individual Y branches as a partnership between a committee of members and a Y Staff Advisor. It is designed to be a simple, fun and rewarding way for members to identify ways that they can give back and support their neighbors through their own ideas, skills and energy, and the network of the Y.
A Simple Toolkit
Each step of the program is supported by a set of tools, organized step-by-step to make the planning and running of service projects simple and rewarding for Y members.
- Y leadership identifies a Y member who can chair the Service Committee and a Y staff person for the role of the Y Staff Advisor.
- Y leadership outlines between four and six priorities or community needs to guide the Service Committee’s selection of Togetherhood projects.
- The Y Staff Advisor and the Service Committee Chair work together to recruit between six and eight committee members from Y membership.
Plan the Year of Service
- The Service Committee chair orients committee members and runs the planning meetings, working with the Togetherhood toolkit to identify and develop a calendar of projects that can engage core groups of Y membership as volunteers in projects.
- Each Service Committee member leads a project. Their leadership includes coordinating all details with project partners, where appropriate, promoting the project, and ensuring the volunteers have a high-quality, rewarding experience. Each of these tasks have corresponding tools in the toolkit.
Report and Celebrate
- Project leaders report the results of each project and make sure participants are recognized for their contribution through thank you notes and/or a regular celebration.
The requirements of this signature program are:
- Members lead the program as part of the Service Committee.
- The community (neighbors, partners, the environment we share) is the beneficiary of member volunteer projects. Y programs are not the focus of Togetherhood projects.
- Run a minimum of four projects each year. Each of the four projects are designed to appeal to one of the following Y member groups:
- Adult members ages 40-60
- Young adult members ages 20-40
- Families (with kids 5 and older to participate)
- Unspecified group (teens, seniors, a specific group your Y wants to reach)
- Use the program toolkit.
- Report program outcomes using the toolkit reporting resources.