The father and son Y-Indian Guide program was developed in 1926 to support the father’s vital family role as teacher, counselor, and friend to his son. After World War II, the success of the father/son program nurtured the development of other parent-child programs. A mother/daughter program, called Y-Indian Maidens; a father/daughter program, called Y-Indian Princesses; and the mothers/sons Y-Indian Braves Program.
For 75 years, the program was the cornerstone for family programs in YMCAs across the country. But it is a different world today. The YMCA’s commitment to being a caring, honest, respectful, and responsible organization, and an evolving cultural sensitivity of Native American history prompted YMCAs across the country to re-evaluate their parent/child programs.
One of the strengths of YMCAs is that they have adapted and responded to societal changes in order to remain relevant to their communities. From late 2000 to mid 2003 YMCA staff and volunteers from across the country met on several occasions to craft a parent/child program that had a broader appeal. In the summer and fall of 2003, YMCA Adventure Guides was launched in YMCA communities everywhere.