The Young Men's Christian Association was founded in
London on June 06, 1844, as a response to street sleeping in the
big cities at the end of the industrial revolution.
George Williams, a 23 year old shop assistant, organised the first YMCA to substitute prayer and community action for life on the streets. His YMCA idea was unusual because it crossed the rigid lines which separated the different churches and social classes in London at the time.
We began in 1969 through the merger of Harrow, Plaistow & Forest Gate YMCA's. The proceeds from the sale of their properties provided the 'seedcorn' finance for building our tower hostel. Since then, we have remained true to our roots by responding to youth homelessness and engaging in prayer and community action.