Teaching Our Four Core Values

Did you know that all YMCAs have four core values which we try to incorporate into all of our programs, special events, and membership? These four values are respect, responsibility, honesty and caring. Often times we don’t fully understand the impact we have on our program participants. We don’t get to see how they have absorbed the lessons we share or how they identify the four core values we teach them. At the Y we all work diligently to impart this wisdom on all who come here.

This past winter basketball season, we focused on one core value color and word each week. We would ask the groups what the words meant to them and shared with them what color it represented. Each team wore one of the four core value colors and each week they were identified by that specific value.

After the season ended and a few months had passed, I ran into a mother with her children at Wal-Mart. She shared with me how she appreciated the color of the shirts and the pre-game circle talk, where we discussed the four core values. She shared with me that her youngest son, 5, remembered respect and responsibility the most. When this youngster sees trash on the ground, he repeats to his mother how we need to be responsible and throw our trash away so we respect our planet. I was delighted to hear this story and to know that the things we teach our little ones are being absorbed and shared by them in different ways.

This Y participant is being socially responsible and using the values he learned right here at the Y!

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