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Sir George Williams (11 October 1821 – 6 November 1905), was the founder of the YMCA.Williams was born on a farm in Dulverton, Somerset, England. As a young man, he described himself as a "careless, thoughtless, godless, swearing young fellow" but eventually became a devout Christian.He went to London and worked in a draper's shop. Appalled by the terrible conditions in London for young working men, he gathered a group of his fellow drapers together to create a place that would not tempt young men into sin. That place was the YMCA, which he founded in 1844. One of the earliest converts and contributors to the new association was George's employer, George Hitchcock, whose daughter Helen Jane Maunder Hitchcock he went on to marry in 1853.Williams was knighted in 1894 by Queen Victoria. After his death in 1905, he was commemorated by a stained-glass window in the nave of Westminster Abbey. Sir George Williams is buried in St. Paul's Cathedral.
The Young Men's Christian Association (commonly known as YMCA or simply the Y) is a worldwide organization with more than 57 million beneficiaries from 125 national associations. It was founded on 6 June 1844 by George Williams in London and aims to put Christian principles into practice by developing a healthy "body, mind and spirit". These three angles are reflected by the different sides of the (red) triangle – part of all YMCA logos.The different local YMCAs are voluntarily affiliated through their national organizations. The national organizations in turn are part of both an Area Alliance and the World Alliance of YMCAs. The World Alliance's main motto is: "Empowering young people", and it is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.