In 1994, celebrating a rich history in character development, the YMCA Movement defined character as the demonstration of four core values: caring, honesty, respect and responsibility. YMCA staff intentionally modeled the values with children, youth and adult members and volunteers. The Y has since added inclusion as one of it’s core values.

Often times we don’t fully understand the impact we have on our program participants. We don’t get to see how they have absorbed the lessons we share or how they identify the core values we teach them. At the YMCA of CNW we all work diligently to impart this wisdom on all who come here.

Our core values are inclusion, caring, honesty, respect and responsibility—they guide everything we do.

Red, blue, yellow, green and purple take on a whole new meaning at the Putnam Valley YMCA, Camp Combe Summer Day Camp. In the form of colored beads, these five colors reinforce good character.

Our campers get excited to receive a blank necklace on the first day of camp. And every day, they can earn beads in the five colors, each representing a different character trait.

Bead necklaces are a favorite tradition at camp and a creative way to reinforce good behavior in kids. Different YMCA camps use different beads, but the intent is the same – to reinforce positive behavior, character traits or a special achievement!