YMCA of Greater Birmingham
The YMCA of Greater Birmingham (also known as the Metropolitan Birmingham YMCA) is the branch of the worldwide Young Men's Christian Association for the Birmingham District. The Birmingham YMCA's stated mission is "to put Judeo-Christian principles into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind and body for all." The president and CEO of the organization is Stan Law.
The YMCA of Birmingham was founded in 1884. They constructed the YMCA Building, designed by Wheelock & Wheelock at 526 20th Street North in 1909. In 1926 the organization purchased the former Birmingham Athletic Club building across the street at 505 20th Street from the Robert E. Lee Klan for $200,000. Early programs offered included temporary housing, a game room, a reading room and library, plus classes in mathematics, shorthand and other subjects. The YMCA also held up to ten religious services each week.
Over the years, the programs increased in number and variety. In 1940, the YMCA opened it's first branch away from their downtown location in Five Points South. This was followed by buildings for black members (organized as a group in 1937) in 1951, the Northeast and Shades Valley branches in 1962, 4th Avenue West in 1970, and the original Shelby County branch in 1973. The downtown branch moved to its current location in 1985.
In 2005, the YMCA purchased four branches of SportsFirst from the Baptist Health System for use as branches: Greystone, Mountain Brook, Trussville, and Vestavia. This was followed by the construction of a Youth Center downtown in 2006. In 2011, what is currently the association's largest single facility opened in Hoover.
- Alabaster YMCA, Alabaster
- Downtown YMCA, Birmingham
- Greystone YMCA, Shelby County (U.S. Highway 280)
- Hoover YMCA, Hoover
- Mountain Brook YMCA, Mountain Brook
- Northeast YMCA, Birmingham (Roebuck)
- Pelham YMCA, Pelham
- Shades Valley YMCA, Homewood
- Trussville YMCA, Trussville
- Vestavia YMCA, Vestavia Hills
- Western Area YMCA, Birmingham (Belview Heights)
- 4th Avenue West YMCA
- Downtown YMCA (original building), 526 20th Street North
- Five Points South YMCA, Birmingham (Five Points South)
- Shelby County YMCA
- Hargis Retreat, Chelsea (1999-2019)
- Colored Branch, 326 18th Street South (1957)
- Shades Valley Branch, 1903 29th Avenue South (1957)
- Godwin, Brent. (March 6, 2013). "YMCA of Greater Birmingham taps new President and CEO." Birmingham Business Journal.