YMCA International Service Programmes

Through YMCA International Service Programmes (ISP), YMCA of Singapore collaborates closely with regional YMCA counterparts to reach out to the less privileged communities in Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam. Volunteers would be involved in community development projects which focus on improving healthcare, education, infrastructural improvement, sustainability, conservation and capacity building, with the aim of empowering these communities.

YMCA administers funds from the National Youth Council to support volunteers for the Youth Expedition Project (YEP). This support enables youths to embark on service-learning expeditions to make a difference to overseas communities in ASEAN, China and Sri Lanka.

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Social Outcome in Numbers (As of April 2023):
Asset 5


  1. Cambodia
    In Cambodia, YMCA International Service Programmes partner with various NGOs in numerous provinces and with the aim to empower the locals with a structured and sustainable English programme. We also help in the infrastructure in the community where we build schools, houses, toilets, libraries, dig wells and more. 

  2. China
    In the aftermath of the disastrous earthquake in Sichuan on 12 March 2008, both YMCA of Singapore and YMCA Shanghai came together to serve the people of Dujiangyan, one of the cities affected by the earthquake. With funding support from Singapore Red Cross, a 3 storey building was purchased to serve the surrounding community. This building also serves as a base for volunteers to reach out to the different needy segments such as the destitute elderly, handicapped adults and school children of Dujiangyan and surrounding towns.

  3. Indonesia
    We partner with a local foundation in East Java to improve the welfare of the people living in the surrounding areas of Mt Arjuna, East Java. Volunteers from YMCA of Singapore conduct structured English curriculum classes at the rural secondary schools and are also involved in the refurbishment work of the secondary schools which are incomplete due to the lack of funding.

  4. Laos
    In YMCA International Service Programmes, we focus on education. We bring teams of volunteers to conduct a structured English curriculum on a regular basis for youths in hopes to better their future livelihood. In Luang Prabang, teams teach and assist in infrastructure improvements of local schools which serves students from farming villages. 

  5. Myanmar
    We work with YMCA Myanmar to serve the communities in the Pathein and Maubin region. To support the vulnerable youths in these areas, YMCA Myanmar together with YMCA Pathein and YMCA Maubin have set up a Vulnerable Youth Programme. This programme provides non-formal education and vocational training that will lead to better and sustainable livelihoods for the youths. Volunteers from YMCA of Singapore participate in this initiative by conducting literacy and skill based workshops that seek to enhance and complement the program. This includes English classes and confidence building workshops. In addition, our volunteers are involved in improving the infrastructure support of the community such as building bridges, roads, as well as a new community centre to serve the people better.

  6. Nepal

    The April 2015 Nepal earthquake killed more than 9,000 people and injured more than 23,000. Hundreds of thousands of people were made homeless with entire villages flattened across many districts of the country. YMCA of Singapore reaches out to the villagers in Bhagawati and Khanalthok villages in Bhakunde, Kavre District with support from our local partner in Nepal.

    The objective of the YMCA Rebuilding Community Programme is to help build temporary shelters for the people who have lost their homes where volunteers support the local workers and work alongside with the villagers. We will also embark on rebuilding damaged schools affected by the massive earthquake.

  7. Philippines
    YMCA of Singapore aims to provide assistance by sending teams of volunteers to Panay Island to help survivors rebuild their homes and livelihoods in the wake of the devastation caused by Super Typhoon Haiyan.We also serve in Pangasinan, Luzon, to help alleviate water crisis faced by the community. It is intended to provide sustainable response to the basic needs and livelihood of the community so that health, education, productivity and income generation can be improved.

  8. Sri Lanka
    We partner with YMCA of Batticaloa to support the locals in a regular medical care programme. This reaches out to the displaced villagers in Batticaloa, eastern Sri Lanka who were affected by the 2004 Tsunami. We send an annual medical team to reach out to them in a medical clinic camp and provide medicine to the needy locals. With the support of Singapore Red Cross, we have funded the building of a community centre in Batticaloa, which is now used as a base for the medical mobile clinic programme.

  9. Thailand
    In Chiang Mai, we focus on education and infrastructure setup for villagers living in rural Chiangmai Province. We have also collaborated with YMCA of Chiang Mai on various green initiatives focused on educating the community on the application and advantages of biogas digesters in various village schools.

  10. Vietnam
    We work closely with YMCA Vietnam to develop village schools in Ben Tre, Dalat and Tuy Hoa Provinces with the support of the various education bureaus. Our programme focus is to assist schools in providing a more conducive learning environment for the students in these provinces and to help the schools to achieve the National Standard of Education in terms of the schools’ physical infrastructure.

    By achieving the National Standard, it will enable the school to get more recognition and funding from the central government as well as improve the learning environment of the schools and in turn, the quality of education for the children.

To find out how you can be a part of the YMCA International Service Programmes, please email Chen Yin at chenyin@ymca.org.sg. To find out on the latest happenings on YMCA International Service Programmes, please visit their Facebook page here.