20th YMCA World Council: “Ignite”

On 3 July 2022, the 20th YMCA World Council will begin. For the first time ever, it’s going to be a hybrid event. We will meet in person in Aarhus, Denmark, and online. We continue to monitor the COVID situation, and try and do the right thing. The priority is for as many as possible to meet, one way or the other, at another vital moment for the global YMCA Movement. Why?

Because our world and our YMCA has been turned on its head by this pandemic, and we need to reconnect: we’ve missed each other. We’re ready to respond to new learning, new imperatives, new roles, and new methods in supporting young people and their communities.

Which is why the World Council theme in 2022 is simply ‘IGNITE.’ It’s a moment to provide the spark and light the flame to take us forward. Specifically, we’ll be igniting our vision, our collaboration, and our solutions. The World Council itself is the global YMCA Movement’s highest decision-making body, bringing together all 120 National YMCA Movements. More than that, it’s the biggest and most important shared space we have.

What do we hope to achieve? At least four things:

First, agreeing and adopting a new Movement-wide strategy, as we look towards a 2030 horizon. Imagine: wherever we are in the world, we all agree on a common vision, mission and goals. Our ‘North Star.’

Second, showcasing ‘solutions’, and specifically ‘youth-led solutions, sharing what we’ve done in identifying, supporting and seed-funding young people’s responses to their own challenges in their own communities, in areas like climate, jobs and mental health and working together – ‘collaborating’ in ‘co-labs’ across the generations – to develop and launch new youth solutions in line with Vision 2030.

Third, strengthening our governance as we elect new officers.

And fourth, just enjoying ‘family’ and fun, as we celebrate and enjoy who we are and where we’re from. Imagine: the ‘great global good’ of the YMCA at play. We really do refuel at World Council….before we ‘IGNITE.’

In person, we’ll do all this in Aarhus, Denmark’s second city. A green and beautiful place, an old city with a young population, a port city with a view on the world, and the stunning conference facilities of the city’s world-famous Concert Hall. We’ll keep you posted about all the practical details. Register from 1st November here.


CoNGO Notes: For more information on CoNGO–the Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations, visit For specific information about how CoNGO and its substantive committees (also known as NGO Committees) work on matters related to the subject of the event on this page, visit NGO Committees

Sustainable Recovery pledge launch

Join the launch of the Sustainable Recovery pledge

COVID-19 continues to have a devastating effect on people and countries across the world. Not only does it take lives and affect livelihoods, economies and societies – it also poses serious threats to the enjoyment of human rights.  And it is hampering progress towards achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

As countries are preparing to build back after the pandemic, it is important that this is done using the 2030 Agenda, grounded in States’ human rights obligations, as well as the Paris Agreement, as the blueprint. But how exactly?

Join the high-level online event on Wednesday 30 June at 2:00-3:00 PM (CEST) and follow the launch of the Sustainable Recovery Pledge which until now has backing from 39 states across the world.

Learn more & register here:

Among speakers will be senior UN officials and high level members of governments, including:

  • UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Michelle Bachelet
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs of Denmark, Mr. Jeppe Kofod
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs of Chile, Mr. Andrés Allamand

You will also meet representatives from civil society and business alongside human rights experts. The event will have interpretation to English, Spanish and French. It will be recorded and made publicly available.


CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit For more information on the NGO Committee for Rare Diseases, please visit