Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Global Engagement

Old Colony YMCA has been listening and responding to our communities’ most critical social needs since 1887.

We continue to condemn systemic racism, bias, and discrimination of all kinds. When confronted with instances of injustice, we will address the root cause and commit to meaningful change.

By building a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion, we aim to ensure that our employees, our youth, our families, and our communities achieve equitable outcomes and live fulfilling, healthy lives.

We know that when we work as one, we move people and communities forward.

The Y is made up of people of all ages, from all walks of life, working side-by-side to strengthen communities. Together, we strive to ensure that everyone, regardless of ability, age, cultural background, ethnicity, faith, gender, gender expression, gender identity, ideology, income, national origin, race or sexual orientation has the opportunity to reach their full potential with dignity. Our core values are caring, honesty, respect and responsibility — they guide everything we do.

Emerging Global Leaders Institute (EGLI)

At the Y, we value the diverse array of talent and experience that emerging leaders bring to our Movement. EGLI is a cohort-based experience with a curriculum to develop global competencies and perspectives towards enhancing the Y’s ability to positively impact our changing and increasingly diverse communities. The Institute prepares emerging YMCA leaders to assume pivotal leadership roles to sustain and expand the Y’s impact in advancing inclusion, equity, and global engagement.

Employee Resource Groups (ERG)

We know that the key to effectively empowering young people to reach their full potential, improving individual and community well-being, and inspiring action in our communities is a passionate, experienced and diverse array of staff, volunteers and members who value what everyone brings to the table. Believing we all benefit from the unique talents of our diverse staff, we encourage our Y staff to participate in our six national Employee Resource Groups, which offer opportunities to contribute, learn, network and share experiences as they progress in their careers.

Emerging Multicultural Leadership Experience (EMLE)

EMLE is a dynamic learning experience designed to help emerging multicultural staff and allies deepen our connection with the movement, discover our potential as cause driven leaders and grow our careers in the YMCA. While this experience is designed for emerging multicultural staff, the Y has an opportunity to serve as a bridge builder. EMLE is about changing and disrupting the status quo! We need voices represented at all levels in order to grow as a movement. Whether you are a Senior Leader in your YMCA, a volunteer, or an ally, you play a vital role in affecting change and are welcome to join us on this unique experience as there will be tracks catered to all!

Multicultural Executive Career Advancement (MECA pilot program)

MECA is a 12 month professional development experience designed to prepare emerging leaders for their first Executive position in the Y. MECA includes a blend of experiences, professional assessments, professional development plans, webinars, workshops and stretch assignments to provide a unique learning experience focused on preparing participants to succeed in achieving an Old Colony executive position. The purpose of MECA is to prepare staff to become competitive candidates for Y executive positions so that OCY staff at every level reflect the communities that we serve. 

Talking About Racism and Racial Equity (National Education Association)

Key Resources for Promoting Equity and Reducing Disparities (SAMHSA)

Talking About Race (National Museum of African American History and Culture

Talking About Race with Kids (Books for Littles) 

I’m writing to you today with a range of emotions.

I’m saddened by the inexplicable loss of yet another human life. I’m confused as to how after taking so many steps forward during my lifetime, we as a country seemingly always find a way to take steps back. I’m angered by a system that vilifies people because of how they look or where they’re from.

What happened to George Floyd on May 25th and Breonna Taylor on March 13th and Ahmaud Arbery on February 23rd is far too familiar to us all – especially to the Black community. These murders and others like them will leave an unrelenting, everlasting stain on our country. To those of you experiencing pain, frustration, and exhaustion from this never-ending fight…we hear you, we’re with you, and we support you.

Protests and rallies in major cities across America and the world, including one I attended this week in the City of Brockton, continue to communicate simple and powerful messages to which we should all be listening:

Black Lives Matter. We Want Justice. I Can’t Breathe.

It’s hard to know where to start to properly address such a boundless issue. It will take empathy in every sense of the word to foster the true collaboration we need in communities across America. I’m reminded of what Kevin Washington, President and CEO of YMCA of the USA, said just a couple years ago:

“Young people can accomplish anything.”

At the Y, this has always been our focus, and this is where we’ll start. Young people have always driven change in our community, and today is no different. We are committed to acknowledging, understanding, and breaking down the inequities that exist in our organization and our society – and we’ll do this by following the lead of our young people.

  • We will find new ways to both amplify youth voice and mobilize for change.
  • We will reinforce our commitment to diversity and inclusion at every level of our Y.
  • We will work with public officials, community leaders, partner organizations, and people with lived experience to create positive change.
  • We will advocate for social justice at the federal, state, and local level.

For decades, Old Colony Y has addressed the challenges faced by our community by developing innovative programs in the areas of juvenile justice, mental health, violence prevention, homelessness, and so much more. At the core of that work are thousands individual relationships with the people we serve every day. As we face a new challenge today, we will look to this history for guidance, and then pivot to look forward with hope and aspiration.

While I will never be able to see the world through the eyes of a person of color or understand the pain of someone who is persecuted for simply being something other than white, I will do everything I can to fight for change. Our Y must be a leader in the way we treat people, the way we serve the community, and the way we drive progress.

I consider myself lucky to be a part of a mission-driven organization along with colleagues from all backgrounds and experiences. I wonder at times like these how those colleagues are feeling about the culture of our Y and the state of their community – because before we can look to the future, we must confront the emotions of the present.

With that in mind, we developed an anonymous feedback loop with our staff to fight inequity both internally and externally. We can’t do it without you – our staff, members, participants, and community. Here, staff can share questions, ideas, and concerns surrounding racial equity so we can begin to develop solutions together. I hope to share some of that feedback with you soon.

In times like these, it’s important that we all take a moment to simply “check in” with our teams, our friends, and our families. These conversations may be uncomfortable, but they are necessary as we attempt to move forward. On this page, you’ll find links to resources you may find helpful this week and in the weeks to come.

Please stay safe,


Vincent Marturano
President & CEO
Old Colony Y

Break the Silence

Break the Silence was created to share stories, perspectives, and ideas surrounding all forms of diversity. While these discussions may be difficult at times, they are an imperative first step in our journey toward inclusion and equity.


Y-Ability is an ongoing effort to strive towards a fully inclusive Y, where individuals with intellectual and physical disabilities are able to meet health, wellness and social goals with support and resources.