Our Story

We are for, by and about women and girls. We transform lives by providing a continuum of critical services and programs that build capacity for lasting positive change. We strive to change the underlying causes and issues that are root causes of inequality, violence, poverty and homelessness.

YWCA Halifax is Halifax Regional Municipality’s only organization that builds economic security, promotes wellness and creates opportunities for women, girls and their families by providing a strong voice and integrated services.

In 2011, YWCA Halifax established a new mission, vision, values and strategic directions. Through community consultations, participant focus groups, and extensive research, we identified four key areas of focus for the next five years. These include delivering quality, accessible developmental early learning and child care; advancing women’s economic and housing security; promoting the leadership, health and wellness of women and girls; and ending violence against women.

Established in 1874 as one of the first YWCAs in Canada, we have been promoting women’s leadership and meeting community needs for more than 135 years.

We work to establish new partnerships and to nurture those who graciously support our cause. As a result, we continue to make it possible for women and children to escape homelessness, violence, and instability and move towards a brighter future.


YWCA Halifax is one of 34 Member Associations operating within YWCA Canada’s membership framework. YWCA Canada is the country’s oldest and largest women's multi-service organization. With 34 Member Associations operating in more than 400 districts and communities across the country, YWCA’s Turning Point Programs for Women™ - which address personal safety, economic security and well-being – reach out to one million women and girls in nine provinces and one territory

YWCA is the largest national provider of shelter to women, serving 25,000 women, children and teen girls including 6,000 fleeing domestic violence each year. We are the largest provider of literacy, life skills, employment and counselling programs in the country, and the second largest provider of child care services.

YWCA Canada is a member association of the World YWCA which unites 25 million women and girls worldwide and spans 120 countries.


Our Mission

We build economic security, promote wellness and create opportunities for women, girls and their families by providing a strong voice and integrated services. 

Our Vision

We envision a world where women and girls are empowered in a safe and equitable society.

Four Focus Areas

  • Promote the leadership, health and wellness of women and girls
  • Advance women’s economic and housing security
  • Deliver quality, accessible, developmental early learning and child care
  • Work to end violence against women and girls

Our Values

YWCA Halifax values

  • Diversity
  • Inclusion
  • Respect
  • Equity
  • Security
  • Freedom of Choice
  • Responsiveness
  • Collaboration

Reach & Impact

We are a hub of services for women, young women, and families. We enhance the quality, continuity and comprehensiveness of services through integration and grow to meet the needs of diverse women facing multiple barriers through collaboration and community-responsiveness.

Capacity & Visibility

We strive to raise the organizational profile through expanding the visibility of reach and impact, building philanthropic relationships and cultivating champions and by being recognised as the leading organization on issues affecting women and girls in the HalifaxRegionalMunicipality.

Accountability & Sustainability

We operate sustainable programming and are financially secure. We implement relevant, purposeful governance policies and practices and manage risk accordingly to remain fully transparent and accountable to stakeholders.

Guiding Principles

When developing programs and services, we will always apply the following questions: 

  • Will it further our mission?
  • Is it consistent with our values?
  • Necessary - is there a demonstrated community need?
  • Is it sustainable?
  • Will it make a difference in our community?
  • Feasibility - can we do it well?
  • Are we the best one to do it - Should we partner, refer or support others?


902.423.6162 • Halifax, Nova Scotia • Canada