YMCA of the Triangle

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Y Learning Changes Lives

If you have an hour a week to donate, you can make a significant investment in a child's classroom success.

Kids spend 20% of their waking hours outside school. In addition to free time playing outside, many kids need well-trained, supportive adults who can nurture their strengths. Parents are a foundational resource to their children, but other adults can provide support as well by becoming a mentor.

“Reading, tutoring and mentoring can play an important role in increasing a child’s academic success and engagement in learning,” said Tammy Dunne, YMCA of the Triangle Director of Outreach Education Programs.

On average, Y Learning students see a 45% higher passing rate on their end-of-grade math tests and a 35% higher passing rate on end-of-grade reading tests than their peers. Julian, a Y Learning student, earned a spot on the honor roll last year! You can read his story here.


Last year, more than 1,800 children in Wake, Chatham, Durham, Johnston, Lee, Orange and Pamlico counties attended a Y Educational Support Program. Y Learning, the YMCA's standardized after school tutorial program, serves children in grades K - 8 at little or no cost, thanks to the Y’s Annual Campaign.

Each week during the school year, students receive homework help, participate in teacher-led learning labs and engage in character enrichment activities. Students come directly to the program after school.

“Through Y Learning programs, we work on specific challenges for each child and can show significant growth from the first assessment to the last test of the school year,” said Tammy.


Organized by the YMCA in partnership with the Wake County Public School System, Y Learning serves students who struggle to meet school system benchmarks and live in under-served neighborhoods. Each of the YMCA's 43 Y Learning sites includes at least one certified teacher and maintains a low staff-to-child ratio.

Help us bridge the education gap by volunteering at the Y. Just complete a volunteer application and contact a Y Learning Director at a branch near you.