The Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) has reported that its overall income has risen by about 15% between 2004 and 2007.
This statement was made during its three-day Global Operations Plan (GOP) Country Focus Meeting which started yesterday at its head office, Fort Street in Freetown.
The association revealed that this improved financial stability was as a result of the increment in its own contribution to the annual income by 4% to 10% in fundraising initiatives.
It pointed out that there had also been a rise in administration income from projects and that the introduction of ‘QuickBooks’ had helped financial documentation and timely reporting and a proper system of financial planning, approving budgets and for reporting on expenditure which has also improved financial stability.
It noted that as a result these improvements had strengthened the relationship between the association and funding partners.
The association announced that it now received funding from eight different sources.
It also reported that with the support from both YCI and from the World & Africa Alliance had enabled it to review its constitution and governance arrangements with an emphasis on increasing the participation of young people (age 17-30) and women, develop new organizational policies for youth participation, general administration, finance and personnel, HIV/AIDS, gender and fundraising.
The national chairman of YMCA, Sheka Peter John Charles, said “the national body represented by the head office of YMCA-SL is definitely registering progress,” but accepted that the capacity of the local branches needed to be built to reflect the national growth.
This was also urged by other international donors and partners present at the meeting.
The executive secretary of Africa Alliance of YMCA, Carlos M Sanvee who graced the meeting, advised that YMCA-SL should focus more on young people and that it should try to build one core identity of African YMCA which would be a unit body operating as partners with YMCA international.
Partners and donors from Kenya, Ghana, USA, Canada and Germany together with the YMCA Africa Alliance executive secretary applauded the gains and improvements made over the years by YMCA-SL.
The meeting will continue until Saturday when it members will discuss the past and prospective projects, discuss the 2008 road map of YMCA and look at maintaining growth for a national movement.
They will also look at the 2008 budget for national council and the principles of partnership with the other YMCA international branches.