YWCA Hunter Region Inc. is part of YWCA World. We are a women-led organisation that achieves positive change by providing advocacy, programs and services for women and families for a stronger community.
YWCA Hunter deliver programs and services and undertake advocacy to develop the leadership and collective power of women and girls; supporting individuals, their families and communities at critical times, and promoting gender equality and community strengthening.
The YWCA in the Hunter has been delivering services to women of the Newcastle region in later years to the wider Hunter community for 95 years. In the Hunter, the YWCA has been supporting and working with women and their families since 1880. The YWCA Newcastle commenced operations at 113 King Street Newcastle in 1921 with Club Rooms, Cafeteria, Classes and a variety of Clubs open to all people. There were 800 members in 1963. The YWCA moved into the Dawson Street Cooks Hill property in 1963 with the new gymnasium being added and opened by Betty Cuthbert in 1965. The YWCA Hostel in Parkway Avenue, Bar Beach War Memorial Hostel – was built in 1953 offering accommodation at reasonable rates plus ‘wholesome lifestyle’ for ‘business girls and students’. It transitioned to mixed accommodation and then was sold in 2007.
The YWCA Hunter has a chequered history of program delivery and we aim to move with recognised needs/trends and available research in the community.
As we respond to community needs and trends we have an increasing focus on early intervention programs at the YWCA Hunter as we recognise the benefit of childhood learning in today’s world. We currently deliver a suite of programs for children at preschool age and primary age. As we strive to stay relevant KinderJAZZ and KinderYOGA have been added and together with KinderGYM make up our current programs. Our programs aim to make early intervention growth classes accessible to all families. We do not charge a term fee and it is a pay as you go system. All classes are affordable and accessible to the normal families.
School holiday time is when the YWCA Vacation Care program comes alive with an innovative, fun packed program that ensures the children of working parents have a thrilling and enriching school holiday experience. The program is funded through DEC with parents eligible for the Government’s Child Care Rebates. The program runs at the YWCA Hunter centre through each school holiday break –two weeks each break and three and a half weeks in the January school holidays. All activities are delivered through much fun, community awareness and interesting themes set under the government, guidelines called ‘My Time our Place’.
Encore - YWCA’s Encore is a free eight week program designed specifically for women who have experienced breast cancer surgery. Encore sessions currently run in February/March and October/November in Waratah, Valentine and Maitland.
Hall Hire – affordable, competitive rates for hire of an indoor basketball court.
Accommodation – budget accommodation for female international university students.