The YWCA has been central to life of women in the north since 1966. From its modest start providing housing to single working women, YWCA NWT has evolved to meet the needs of women and children - and the community itself.

YWCA Yellowknife milestones

1966 - YWCA Canada and YWCA Toronto answer a request from government to provide housing for a growing population of single, working women in Yellowknife. A local committee is struck to establish a YWCA in the Northwest Territories

1968 - The new YWCA Yellowknife opens the doors of a seven bed residence on Matonabee Street, and moves several times to continue expanding.

1969 - YWCA opens its first summer camp for children (later taken over by the City).

1972 - YWCA opens first day care centre in the NWT in Yellowknife, and continues to expand child care spaces through the decade. These day care programs lasted until the mid-1990s

1974 - YWCA opens the first after-school program - at Mildred Hall School - at the request of the school board. That program continues today at every school in the city, and in both French and English

1978 - YWCA Yellowknife expanded housing options yet again, by opening a large residence in Northern United Place.

1986 - The 12 bed Alison McAteer House is established and named after a former YWCA president and city councilor. YWCA Yellowknife opened its first group home for adults with disabilities who need support.   A second group home for adults with disabilities was opened in 1991.

1995 - YWCA Yellowknife closed its group homes and moved adults with disabilities into their own shared apartments.  The YWCA continued to provide in-home support in a less restrictive environment.

1996 - The Alison McAteer House family violence shelter housed at NUP moved into a separate building, specially renovated to provide safety for women and children.

1997 - YWCA Yellowknife moved out of Northern United Place to make way for the Aurora College campus. The transitional and emergency housing programs for families moved to the 39-suite Rockhill apartment complex on 54 Avenue where it continues to this day.

2000 - YWCA begins offering Project Child Recovery, a program that helps children who have witnessed violence learn the skills to cope with their experiences.

2003 - YWCA begins offering in-home support and outreach for people with chronic psychiatric illness. YWCA purchases the first of five homes for clients who need in-home support

2006 - YWCA offers first Power of Being a Girl Conference for girls ages 12-14 to build confidence and self-esteem.

2008 - YWCA partners with Taiga Adventure Camp to provide a summer camp for both pre-teen and teenage girls in Fort Smith. Tagia achieved independence in 2012.

2009 - YWCA begins offering GirlSpace to girls ages 8 to 13 afterschool. The program's goal is to empower girls.

2011 - YWCA Yellowknife hosts YWCA Canada's annual general meeting in Yellowknife, the only time the meeting has been north of 60.

2013 - YWCA withdraws from providing housing to people with disabilities and mental health issues. Construction begins on the new Betty House, transitional housing for women and women with children.

2014 - YWCA opens Lynn's Place, (formerly named Betty House).

2017 - YWCA takes over operation of the NWT Family Centre.

2017 - YWCA Yellowknife changes its name to YWCA NWT to reflect its broader focus and mandate on working with women and families across the NWT.

Now in its fifth decade, YWCA NWT continues to answer to the community's call for help by providing an array of services to women, children and families.