Feature Article - June 2015
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Regional Information

A Look at Regional Trends


YMCAs were most common in the Northeast and South Central states, where 8.3 percent and 6.3 percent of respondents, respectively, said they worked with YMCAs or similar organizations. They were least likely to be found in the West, where just 3.4 percent of respondents were with YMCAs.

Camp respondents were most common in the West and Northeast, where 8.3 percent of each of those subgroups reported working with camp facilities. They were least likely to be found in the South Atlantic region, where 5.3 percent of respondents were with camps.

Finally, community center respondents were most likely to be found in the West (8.5 percent of respondents in the West) and in the Midwest (7.9 percent), and least common among respondents in the Northeast (4.5 percent).

With the exception of health clubs, all facility types, like the survey population in general, were most likely to be found in the Midwest.

Just over three in 10 parks respondents (30.6 percent) were from the Midwest. They were followed by parks respondents in the West (23 percent), South Atlantic (21.3 percent), Northeast (16 percent) and South Central states (8.9 percent).

A similar percentage of college respondents (30.3 percent) were from the Midwest. They were followed by respondents in the Northeast (22 percent), South Atlantic (17.5 percent), South Central states (17.2 percent) and the West (13.1 percent).

A much larger number (39.5 percent) of school respondents were located in the Midwest. They were followed by the South Central states (18.1 percent), the Northeast (17.2 percent), the West (14.4 percent) and the South Atlantic (10.7 percent).

More than a quarter (27 percent) of health club respondents were located in the West. They were followed by those in the Midwest (24.3 percent), the South Central region (17.6 percent), the Northeast (16.2 percent) and the South Atlantic (14.9 percent).

Nearly a third (32.2 percent) of YMCA respondents were located in the Midwest. They were followed by those in the Northeast (24.4 percent), the South Atlantic (17 percent), the South Central region (13.3 percent) and the West (11.9 percent).

A similar number (32.2 percent) of camp respondents were located in the Midwest. They were followed by those in the West (22.8 percent), the Northeast (19.3 percent), the South Atlantic states (13.5 percent) and the South Central region (12.3 percent).

Finally, 32.9 percent of community center respondents were located in the Midwest. They were followed by those in the West (23.5 percent), the South Atlantic (18.2 percent), the South Central region (12.4 percent) and the Northeast (10.6 percent).

A majority of respondents in all regions reported that they form partnerships outside of their organizations to enhance their operations, programming opportunities, marketing, funding and more. Those from the Midwest were the most likely to form such partnerships. Some 88.1 percent of Midwestern respondents reported they had done so. They were followed by the South Atlantic region (87.9 percent had formed partnerships), the West (85.5 percent), the South Central region (83.2 percent) and the Northeast (81 percent).

Respondents in the Midwest were the most likely to form partnerships with local schools. Those in the South Atlantic region were more likely than those in other regions to partner with local government, nonprofit organizations, corporate or local businesses, healthcare or medical facilities, and YMCAs and similar organizations. Respondents in the South Central region were more likely than others to partner with colleges and universities, state government and the military. Respondents in the West were more likely than others to partner with the federal government, and those in the Northeast were more likely to partner with private health clubs.

There also is slight variation across the regions in terms of the primary audience served by their main facilities. For example, respondents in the South Atlantic and Midwest were more likely to report that they served all ages than were respondents in other regions. Some 46.3 percent of South Atlantic respondents and 43.4 percent of Midwestern respondents said their primary audience was all ages. Respondents from the South Central region were least likely to serve all ages, with 34.1 percent naming this as their primary audience.

Adults ages 19 to 64 were more likely to be the primary audience in the South Central states, where 22 percent said this was the main group using their facilities. They were followed by the West, where 20 percent of respondents named adults 19 to 64 as their primary audience. They were least likely to be the primary audience in the Midwest, where 15.1 percent chose this group.

There was far less difference between the regions with regard to children ages 4 to 12. This age group was most likely to be the primary audience in the Northeast, where 19.1 percent of respondents mainly serve that audience, and least likely to be the primary audience for the South Central region, where 16 percent said this was their main group of users.

College students were most likely to be the primary audience in the South Central states and the Northeast, where 14.3 percent and 14.1 percent of respondents, respectively, named this as their main group of users. They were least likely to be the primary audience in the West. Just 7.7 percent of Western respondents said college students were their primary audience.

Teens ages 13 to 18 were more than twice as likely to be the primary audience for respondents in the South Central region as they were in the South Atlantic states. Some 12.5 percent of South Central respondents said teens were their primary audience. They were followed by the Midwest, where 10 percent serve primarily teens. In the South Atlantic states, just 6 percent of respondents named teens as their primary audience.

Seniors age 65 and older were most likely to be the primary audience in the West. Some 4.9 percent of Western respondents said they primarily serve seniors. This compares with just 0.7 percent of respondents in the South Central region who said seniors were their primary audience.