Feature Article - June 2020
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Trends in YMCAs, YWCAs, JCCs and Boys & Girls Clubs

A Look at Trends in Ys

Revenues & Expenditures

The percentage of Y respondents who reported that their revenues had increased year-over-year was up considerably for 2019, with 61.2% of Y respondents reporting that revenues had increased from 2018. This compares with 51.5% who reported an increase from 2017 to 2018. Another 30.6% of Y respondents said their revenues held steady in 2019, and 8.2% saw a decrease. (See Figure 57.)

In January 2020 when the Industry Report Survey was taken, Y respondents were optimistic about the year to come, with 63.1% expecting revenues to increase over 2019, 27.4% projecting no change, and 9.5% expecting a decrease.

The COVID-19 Update Survey taken in early May showed the vast majority (97.4%) of Y respondents were expecting revenues to decrease. Some 13.2% of Y respondents said they expect their revenues to be down by 10 to 20% in 2020. Nearly half (47.4%) are expecting a decrease of 30 to 40%. And more than one-third (36.8%) are expecting revenues to fall by 50% or more in 2020.

After a couple of years of decreasing operating expenses (down 4.8% in 2018 and 9.3% in 2019), Y respondents reported an increase of 5.3% in 2020, from an average of $2,640,000 to $2,780,000. Looking forward, they expect a further 8.3% increase over the next two years, to an average of $3,010,000 in 2020.

On average, Y respondents reported that they recover 71% of their operating costs via revenues, down slightly from 73.2% in 2019. While more than half (54.8%) of Y respondents said they earn back 71% or more of their operating costs via revenues, just 29% of non-Y respondents earn back so much. And while nearly half (46.2%) of non-Y respondents said they earn back 50% or less of their operating costs in revenues, just 20.2% of Y respondents earn back 50% or less.

As is generally the case, Y respondents were far more likely than most other respondents to indicate that they had taken action to reduce their operating expenses. While 90.6% of Y respondents said they had taken such action (down from 93.2% in 2019), 80.6% of non-Y respondents had taken action to reduce their expenses. The methods Y respondents were most likely to use to reduce their costs were: improving energy efficiency (67.1%); increasing fees (65.9%); reducing staff (48.2%); cutting programs or services (23.5%); and putting construction plans on hold (18.8%).

Y Facilities

Once again, Y respondents were more likely to see either increasing or decreasing usage at their facilities than to report no change. More than half (53.5%) of Y respondents said the number of people using their facilities had increased from 2018 to 2019, while 20.9% reported a decrease. Just around one-quarter (25.6%) said the number of people using their facilities did not change from 2018 to 2019. (See Figure 58.)

Looking forward, more than one-half of Y respondents expected to see further growth in 2020 (55.3%) and 2021 (55.4%), while the percentage expecting to see a decline in usage falls to 10.6% expecting a decrease in 2020, and 4.8% expecting a decrease in 2021.