Our History

The Central Coast YMCA operates five branches, Salinas YMCA, Watsonville YMCA, YMCA of the Monterey Peninsula, South County YMCA and YMCA of San Benito County.  Each branch is led by an Executive Director and a local Board of Managers (volunteers)

The Central Coast YMCA was formed in 1989 with the merger of two independent YMCAs – the Salinas Community YMCA (founded in 1921) and the Watsonville Family YMCA (founded in 1898). 

The YMCA of the Monterey Peninsula, which began as a USO in 1941, merged with the Central Coast YMCA in 1990. 

The South County YMCA became the fourth branch of the Central Coast YMCA in January 1998.  After a very successful Founder’s Campaign in 1999, the YMCA of San Benito County became the fifth branch of the Central Coast YMCA.

Today, the Central Coast YMCA employs 30 full time employees and about 379 part-time employees whose goal is to serve approximately 26,000 people within Santa Cruz, San Benito and Monterey counties.  

The Central Coast YMCA is an independent, private, nonprofit corporation, governed by the laws of the State of California.  While we are a part of the YMCA of the USA, we are responsible for our own policies, programs and budgets.  The Central Coast YMCA has access to management assistance from the YMCA of the USA. 

Central Coast YMCA policies are set by the Board of Directors, a group of local volunteers legally charged with the responsibility of managing the affairs of the organization.