Annual Report

2017 Online Annual Report

Dear Friends,

With your support, we have continued our work to strengthen families and our community. This is part of a legacy at YWCA St. Paul that we are proud to continue.

In the years since its founding in 1907, YWCA St. Paul has evolved to meet the changing needs of women and families in our community. And 2017 was no different. Our youth programs continued to support the development of young people, shifting to a sharper focus on leadership, employability and empowerment. Our employment programs continued to offer a path to a career and higher earnings, and we adjusted the credentials offered in our Career Pathways program to meet the needs of the job market and those in it. Our housing & supportive services programs continued to help families move from homelessness to stable housing. Our health & fitness center opened the door to healthy living for many of our neighbors. And our efforts to educate and engage our community on issues of racial justice and gender equity continue to grow.

A significant number of people in our community struggle to make a living wage, to find decent, affordable housing and to ensure their children have a stable home and the support they need to get a good start in life. Our programs continued to provide them with the support, access and tools they need to improve their lives for the better.

We do face our fair share of challenges. Like many nonprofits, we have been affected as workplace giving trends change, and as the priorities of many institutional funders have changed. These changes come as our organization faces a need to invest in infrastructure—the people, systems and facilities that make our work possible.

These aren’t small challenges, and we have undertaken a strategic facilities planning process to ensure we tackle these challenges in the smartest ways we can. We look forward to sharing our plan and seeking input as the process moves forward.

Your gifts make it all possible, and we appreciate your partnership and support. Thank you for being part of YWCA St. Paul and our mission.

Warm regards,

Gaye Adams Massey
Chief Executive Officer

In this report:

2017 Board of Directors


Beverly Jones Heydinger, Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (retired)


Steve Halvorsen, HealthPartners


Lisa Lissimore, Minnesota State High School League


Mara Ascheman, Xcel Energy
Kristin Beckmann, Center for Economic Inclusion
Kim Ferguson, U.S. Bancorp Investments, Inc.
Tina Grant, Ecolab
Sara E. Gross Methner, University of St. Thomas
Robyn Hansen, Stinson Leonard Street (retired)
Valerie Littles-Butler, Saint Paul Public Schools
Gaye Adams Massey, YWCA St. Paul
Yvonne Mitchell, 3M Engineering
Mary Nash, Saint Paul Police Department
Kathleen Pinkett, Securian Financial Group
Barb Tretheway, HealthPartners
Cassandra Yarbrough, Coldwell Banker Burnet

People overcame homelessness
Young people prepared for successful futures
People gained skills to overcome barriers to employment & self-sufficiency
People pursued health & wellness

YWCA is on a mission to eliminate racism, empower women and promote peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all.

Collaborating with a broad east metro referral network, YWCA St. Paul anchors the Summit-University community and serves our neighbors in Greater St. Paul and Ramsey County. 

“People literally take having a home for granted. It’s everything, just for my kid to go to her own room and have her own bed.” —Chanell, Rapid Re-Housing Program participant

After the death of a loved one, Chanell struggled with grief, parenthood and keeping stable housing. After working with a case manager in YWCA St. Paul’s Rapid Re-Housing Program, she finally had the security and capacity to accomplish the long-standing goal of getting her GED, and will start online classes at St. Paul College next.

Through programs and services in Housing & Supportive Services, Youth Development, Employment & Economic Development and Health & Wellness, YWCA St. Paul breaks down barriers and builds up communities.

In addition to providing affordable housing, YWCA St. Paul Housing & Supportive Services empower families to move past crisis and decrease dependency on emergency services, keeping families united and safe.

Our Rapid Re-Housing (RRH) program reduces the length of emergency shelter stays by providing a jump-start of supportive services and other resources that empower families to move out of shelters and into stable housing.

Families in the Transitional Housing Program (THP) spend up to 24 months building skills and stabilizing their lives while living in one of the three YWCA Transitional Housing sites.

Families who have experienced long-term homelessness receive help to build stable, healthy lives through Permanent Supportive Housing’s (PSH) combination of affordable housing and supportive services.

Young people in YWCA St. Paul’s Youth Development programs create positive relationships with peers and caring staff to help them succeed in the classroom, work place and community.

Through our partnership with the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota on the Young Women’s Initiative of Minnesota (YWIMN), we provide leadership development and advocacy training for the young women participating in the YWIMN Cabinet, a first-of-its-kind, state-wide partnership between the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota and the Governor’s Office, focused on achieving equity in opportunities and improving the lives of young women in underserved communities.

Our IMPACT Program supports young people’s learning about leadership, work readiness and self-awareness, with special programming for girls and young women (Girls Emerge). Maryam (below) used the skills and connections she made in IMPACT and the City of St. Paul’s Right Track program to become the first woman in her family to pursue higher education.

In Employment & Economic Development programs, individuals build confidence through ongoing case management and training for in-demand jobs as they pursue new credentials to increase earnings or move from welfare to work.

As a contractor of Workforce Solutions, a department of Ramsey County, YWCA St. Paul’s YW Works (YWW) provides culturally specific employment services to African American participants of the Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP). Workshops empowered participants to understand and use the strengths of their cultural practices and community resources in building skills, pursuing employment and securing family stability.

Career Pathways provides customized services and ongoing support to help participants overcome barriers to obtaining and sustaining employment at no cost to eligible participants. Tracks within the program included new programs Office Essentials and Culinary Tech along with the Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) Training Program, which helped people train for and obtain a CDL so that they have access to increased earnings and career growth opportunities.

The Health & Fitness Center (HFC) helps people live active lifestyles, prevent and manage chronic medical conditions and reduce stress through a variety of fitness options, membership types and financial assistance to help keep healthy living accessible. 

In addition to a welcoming, inclusive atmosphere and professional staff, the HFC offers Cardio and Strength Training equipment, Group Fitness classes led by certified instructors and free to members, and Specialty Fitness classes with specialized and/or advanced instruction to members and non-members of all ages. Frequent fitness discounts and financial assistance help keep fitness affordable for more individuals and families.

The Aquatics Program provides swim instruction, coaching and water exercise as well as opportunities for lap swimming, competitive swimming, open swim and pool rental.

Personal Training and Fitness Services provide assessment, instruction, support and coaching by nationally certified personal trainers to help individuals meet their fitness goals.

“I want to go to college for myself first, and for my mother as well—for her to know I’m trying to get to a point where she hasn’t gotten to.” —Maryam, Youth Development Program Participant

The oldest of four and a first-generation American, Maryam has been attending YWCA Youth programming since she was 14 years old. Now, at 18, she is balancing an internship, a job at YWCA St. Paul Health & Wellness Center Kids Care and teaching at her mosque while finishing her senior year classes and taking college courses. Thanks in large part to motivation from her mother and the skills she’s learned through four years of Youth programming, she’ll be attending college in the fall.

Summary of Financial Activity (2017 Fiscal Year)

Supporting documents including the 990 and Audited Financial Statement are available online at or by contacting Peter Olsen at 651-222-3741 or 

Thank You!

We are more grateful than ever for every gift from all of our supporters. As the need for our services grows, we will depend on your support to continue this essential work for families in our community. 

Thank you to all of our donors and partners!


Your contribution makes this work possible.