Welcoming Week 2017
There are more than 42 million foreign-born individuals living in the U.S. today—more than at any other point in history. At the Y, we believe it is imperative that immigrants have access to integration services and that communities are prepared to welcome all.
From September 15-24, we will celebrate Welcoming Week, which brings all together to promote cross-cultural understanding and raise awareness of the benefits of welcoming everyone. Throughout all branches of the YMCA of Greater Brandywine, events will take place. Be sure to check your YMCA lobby during the week for special displays such as the healthiest countries in the world, to learn where your fellow Y members are from, learn fun world facts and enjoy other special activities.
In addition, be sure to enjoy the following special events at branches across the Association! All YMCA of Greater Brandywine members are invited to attend all events.
Thursday, September 14
Movie Screening: Swim Team | 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm | Upper Main Line YMCA
What would you do if your community gave up on your child? In New Jersey, the parents of a boy on the autism spectrum take matters into their own hands. They form a competitive swim team, recruiting diverse teens on the spectrum and training them with high expectations and zero pity. Swim Team chronicles the extraordinary rise of the Jersey Hammerheads, capturing a moving quest for inclusion, independence and a life that feels winning. Swim Team tells a universal story of parenting, coming of age, coping with adversity, and finding hope when a community comes together and creates its own inclusive team. UMLY Swim Team Members, Parents of UMLY program children/adults with diverse abilities, YMCA GBW members and the public (as spaces allows) are invited. Space is limited. Be sure to sign up.
Friday, September 15
- Senior Prom | 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm | West Chester Area YMCA
Create great memories and have lots of fun at our annual Senior Prom! Everyone should enjoy prom no matter their age! Get your grove on if you are 55 and older and bring a friend. All YMCA GBW members are invited.
Saturday, September 16
World Celebration Day | 10:00 am -12:00 pm | Upper Main Line YMCA
Join us for a celebration of cultures where a variety of countries will be represented. Try your luck at our fruit guessing (and tasting) or coin guessing challenges, get crafty at our arts and crafts table, play games from around the world or get a flag tattoo. Enjoy African and Indian style dance performances, a drumming techniques presentation, and a yoga demo. Children’s stories from around the world will also be read. Members and the public are invited to attend.
Monday, September 18
- Reading/Music class | 10:30 am – 11:30 am | Oscar Lasko YMCA
Members of the local community and a church will read stories about different traditional holidays and special celebrations to children in our Pre-K, kindergarten and afterschool programs. West Chester University students will also be leading a music class highlighting a variety of music and instruments. Children in the Pre-K, kindergarten and after school programs at the Oscar Lasko location are invited to attend.
- Movie Presentation: Out of Cordoba | 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | Lionville Community YMCA
Jacob Bender, executive director of the Council for American-Islamic Relations and a Jewish-American filmmaker, will be showing his film, Out of Cordoba. Released last year, the film centers around religion, history and cultural understanding and counters the idea of the clash of civilizations by invoking the tolerant spirit of Córdoba and tracing the life stories of two 12th century philosophers: the Jewish Maimonides and the Muslim Ibn Rushd.
As Bender explains at the start of his film, following the terror attacks on his home city of New York, he wanted to to discover new hope and idealism as a way of refuting the clash theory. Retracing history in the spirit of Ibn Rushd and Maimonides and, to a certain extent, Bender's own pilgrimage of hope, shows that tolerance and free thought – historically and today – can help bridge even the most entrenched divides. YMCA GBW members and the public are invite to attend. A discussion with Bender will follow the movie screening.
- Diversity Art Project | Kennett Area YMCA
A joint effort to highlight the diversity of our town and Y. YMCA GBW Members can paint a tile or more highlighting the diversity of our town and Y; and the tiles will be put together to create a mural with the Y logo at the center. This event runs through Wednesday, September 20. All YMCA GBW members are invited.
Tuesday, September 19
- Community Fair | 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm | Brandywine YMCA
Y members and staff, who were born outside of the United States, will displays showcases of their birth countries. All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
- Henna Tattoos | 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | Lionville Community YMCA
Join us in the lobby to get a henna tattoo! All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
- Zumba/SNAP Program Information | 8:15 pm - 9:15 pm | West Chester Area YMCA
Attend our Zumba class in the Aerobics room and bring a friend. Also information will be available in the lobby on our SNAP programs All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
Wednesday, September 20
- Zumba/Learn Sign Language | 10:45 am - 11:45 am | West Chester Area YMCA
Attend our Zumba class and bring a friend—and learn sign language in our lobby with cards displaying signing for particular words. All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
- Open House & Tour Night | 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm | Upper Main Line YMCA
Meet staff, members and friends at UMLY’s Open House. This is the best way to learn more about our programs, as well as pick up schedules, take a tour, get questions answered and see all that UMLY has to offer. There is something for everyone! The public is invited to attend.
- Jewelry Making | 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm | Lionville Community YMCA
Bring your friends and family out to create your own jewelry and enjoy some good conversation! Open to the public. All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
Thursday, September 21
- International Day of Peace | 11:30 am - 12:30 pm | Upper Main Line YMCA
We will gather to celebrate diversity through music, prayer, poetry and a moment of silence. This will be followed by a pot luck luncheon. Please bring a dish to share to celebrate your culture! All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
- Book Reading: A Million Kisses | 6:00 pm | Lionville Community YMCA
Meet YMCA member and author Jennifer Ozgur, who will be reading an excerpt from her book, A Million Kisses. Ozgur is an English teacher, author, poet, singer and guest speaker whose writings have been featured in many publications. Her children’s book, One Million Kisses, is a must-have for helping new parents raise children who know they are loved. Is it possible to give your child a million kisses from the time they are born until they turn 18? All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
- Community Event | 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm | Brandywine YMCA
We are going to have an event with organizations from the community to come and set up tables and hand out information and highlight resources available to the community. All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
- International Night at Airport Road | 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm | West Chester Area YMCA
Come join the West Chester Y for International Night! There will be an array of activates geared towards different cultures and backgrounds such as food, live music and instruments, arts and crafts, henna tattoos, moon bounce, art show exhibit and more! All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
Friday, September 22
- Third Annual Multicultural Night | 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | Kennett Area YMCA
The Kennett Area YMCA will celebrate its third annual multi-cultural night. Join us in celebrating your culture with food, music and art. All YMCA GBW members and their guests are invited.
- Pickleball, Badminton & Tennis @ Family Fun Night | 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm | Upper Main Line YMCA
YMCA GBW Members are invited to attend Family Fun Night and play pickleball, badminton and tennis. All YMCA GBW members are invited.
- International Night | 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm | Lionville YMCA
Enjoy food and dance from countries around the world. Bring a vegetarian dish to share with others that highlights your culture. All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
- “I am unique because….” | 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | Oscar Lasko YMCA
We will end the week with a community celebration! Enjoy food from around the world, art crafts, live music and information tables. Beginning at 6:30, there will be live entertainment including fencing, karate, dancing and drumming demos, followed by a Zumba party! Finally, the celebration will end with the debut of our video, “I am unique because…..” which will feature Y staff, youth, and members, as well as members of our community at large sharing what makes them unique. All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
- Outdoor Movie Screening | 7:00 pm | Jennersville YMCA
We will be showing the movie, Moana, in Spanish, at 7:30 pm. Enjoy a potluck community dinner starting at 7:00 pm. All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
Saturday, September 23
- Hawk Migration Watch & Raptor Presentation | 10:00 am – 12:00 pm | Upper Main Line YMCA
Join our birding naturalists to observe the fall migration flight of falcons, hawks, and eagles as these birds of prey head south, connecting Berwyn with Central and South America. All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
- Festival | 11:00 am - 2:00 pm | Jennersville YMCA
Enjoy face painting, a balloon artist, moon bounce and more! This event brings together community organizations which offer services to those who may be new to the area. Join us to learn what our community has to offer. In addition, at our TEDx Event, four youth speakers will share their passion and ideas in science, humanity, and diversity. Additionally, other TED talks will be screened. Welcoming week is about welcoming those who have immigrated here and the diversity that brings to our nation. All YMCA GBW members are invited.
- Movie Screening: 8 Borders, 8 Days | 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm | Jennersville YMCA
Join us for a screening of 8 Borders, 8 Days in which a single mother shows us the consequences of closing America’s doors to families fleeing war. With no answer to her application for resettlement in the U.S., and every other path to safety closed off, a smuggler’s raft to Europe was the only way out. 8 Borders, 8 Days is her story; the intimate details of why a fiercely-determined mother is willing to risk her children’s lives for a better future and an immersive experience of their eight-day journey to safety. All YMCA GBW members are invited.
- Belly Dancing Class | 12:45 pm - 1:15 pm | West Chester Area YMCA
Come get a great workout and join us for a fun belly dancing class in our Mind Body Studio room. You can bring a guest with you to join in on the fun! All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.
Sunday, September 24
- Diverse-Ability Swim | 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm | West Chester Area YMCA
We will be having a diverse-ability swim for anyone who falls on the autism spectrum. Lifeguards and swim instructors specifically trained will be present. We believe every child/adult should have the opportunity to benefit from these fundamental skills and enjoy the water in a safe and comfortable environment. All YMCA GBW members and the public are invited.