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The Blue Ridge Association for Christian Conferences and Training was formed in 1907, and shortly thereafter built the Blue Ridge Assembly conference centre. Paul had started rural development programmes for self-reliance of marginal farmers, through co-operatives and credit societies. He also coined the term "rural reconstruction", and many of the principles he developed were later incorporated into the government's nationwide community development programmes. The method also became very popular, and in 1923, it led to the founding of the Chinese National Association of the Mass Education Movement.

In 1878, the YMCA was organized inside the Jaffa Gate of the Old City of Jerusalem and the current landmark building was dedicated by General Lord Allenby in 1933 during the British Mandate of Palestine.

In 1880, the YMCA became the first national organization to adopt a strict policy of equal gender representation in committees and national boards, with Norway being the country that first adopted it. The camp, originally located near Orange Lake in New Jersey, moved to Lake Wawayanda in Sussex County the following year, and then to the shore of Lake Champlain near Westport, New York, in 1891.

In 1885, Camp Baldhead (later known as Camp Dudley), the first residential camp in the United States and North America, was established by A. By 1910, the YMCA was an early influence upon scouting, including the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) and German Scouting. Robinson, a Chicago-area YMCA administrator, briefly left the YMCA to become the BSA's first director. Paul became the first Indian national general secretary of India. James Yen, of the YMCA of China, devised the "thousand character system," based on pilot projects in education.

He and his colleagues were concerned about the lack of healthy activities for young men in major cities; the options available were usually taverns and brothels.

Williams's idea grew out of meetings he held for prayer and Bible-reading among his fellow-workers in a business in the city of London, By 1851, there were YMCAs in the United Kingdom, Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and the United States.

The World Alliance's main motto is "empowering young people".

With regard to the history and purpose of the founding, this "organization and its female counterpart (YWCA) were established to provide low-cost housing in a safe Christian environment for rural young men and women journeying to the cities." It was associated with industrialization and the movement of young people to cities to work.

It include the principles of justice, creativity and honesty.

It stated what had become obvious in most national YMCAs; a global viewpoint was more necessary, and that in doing so, the YMCAs would have to take political stands, especially so in international challenges.

In 1947 the World Alliance of YMCAs gained special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council.

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