Providing a Safe Place In Our Community

Did you know that our Reading YMCA has offered housing ever since the facility was built in 1914? When the concept was introduced to the local community, many expressed concern, questioning “Why housing? Why the Y?”

In response, our Y released the following statement in a 1910 bulletin, defending the decision to offer rooms for rent at our Reading YMCA:

"Many a young man has failed, both morally and physically, because, when coming to the city... he has had no one to direct him to a good boarding place. For this reason alone, if no other, the dormitory system is a legitimate work of the YMCA."

Today, our housing programs look much different than they did in 1914. We have moved past dormitory-style housing and now serve men, women, and women with children struggling with homelessness, mental health disorders, and substance use disorders.  The sentiment of the statement, however, remains the same: no matter what your story is, the Y wants to help you continue it.

Bed Nights provided in 2020

Our Impact

According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), an estimated 13,152 Pennsylvania residents are experiencing homelessness on any given day. Homelessness affects people of all ages, races genders, and socioeconomic statuses and has causes ranging from chemical dependence, to domestic abuse, to unemployment.

At the Y, we provide eleven specialized housing programs across two locations to meet the specific needs of our residents. In all programs, however, we address the root causes of homelessness to ensure our residents lead healthy, productive, and fulfilling lives post-program. Through counseling and case management, residents will work to develop the following:

The YMCA of Reading and Berks County would like to thank the following partners for their support, donations, and supplies for our transitional and permanent housing programs:

Berks County Probation Department
BB&T, Now Truist
City of Reading
County of Berks
Council on Chemical Abuse
Federal Home Loan Bank
Helping Harvest Food Bank

Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
PA Department of Health
PA Department of Public Welfare
Penske Women’s Network
Service Access Management, Inc.
U.S. Department of VA Affairs
United Way of Berks County