Past Challenges

Wondering where we’ve been and what we’ve been up to? Take a look at the regions we’ve visited and the challenges completed.

July's Stop: British Columbia

Explore your community’s roots! - JUL 20

Explore your community’s roots!

An important part of our history is the fact that Canada’s railway was built on indigenous lands. As a small step toward reconciliation, explore the history of the Aboriginal Peoples of the land where you live and work, and share something about what you’ve learned.

This challenge ends July 31, 2017.

Visit a park near you! - JUL 13

Visit a park near you!

Canada’s railways made our magnificent wilderness more accessible and played a key role in the development of our country’s plentiful parks. In B.C. alone, there are three UNESCO World Heritage Sites, six national parks and more than 400 provincial parks, recreation and conservation areas.

For this fun challenge, spend some time exploring an urban, provincial or national park!

This challenge ends July 31, 2017.

What free activities are you up to this summer? - JUL 06

What free activities are you up to this summer?

Railway YMCAs offered plenty of healthy (and free) options for railway workers and the communities they were a part of to keep fit and have fun.

From exploring farmers’ markets to visiting your local Y with a free pass to enjoying community movie nights under the stars, what free (or nearly free) family-friendly activity(ies) are you taking advantage of this summer?

This challenge ends July 31, 2017.

This Month’s Winners


Check back soon for this month’s winners!

June’s Stop: the Prairies

Summertime … and the eating is good! - JUN 22

Summertime … and the eating is good!

Railway Ys helped to ensure the overall well-being of railway workers by providing healthy meals in addition to exercise and recreation facilities. With the season of campfires, barbecues and picnics upon us, we want to know:

What are your recipes for healthy summer eating? Let’s create an online summer cookbook together!

This challenge ends June 30, 2017.

Here’s to the fathers! - JUN 15

Here’s to the fathers!

Railway YMCAs provided a home away from home for the workers who built our railroads. Many of them were fathers who were missing—and being missed by—their families. In honour of Father’s Day on June 18, what is your favourite thing to do with the father figure(s) in your life?  

This challenge ends June 30, 2017.

What’s your Canadian “anthem”? - JUN 08

What’s your Canadian “anthem”?

Music has the power to inspire, entertain and move us—and to increase our sense of belonging. Railway YMCAs provided plenty of opportunities for shared musical experiences through concerts, community dances, music classes and choirs.

This week we want to know: What song, written or performed by a Canadian artist, makes you think of Canada?

This challenge ends June 30, 2017.

 

Get up, get out and get active! - JUN 01

Get up, get out and get active!

Railway YMCAs provided fitness facilities and programs to encourage healthy lifestyles for Canada’s railway workers and their surrounding communities. In honour of National Health and Fitness Day on Saturday, June 3, get up, get out and get active!  

This challenge ends June 30, 2017.

This Month’s Winners


Check back soon for this month’s winners!

May’s Stop: Ontario

Tell us about your dream train trip… - MAY 25

Tell us about your dream train trip…

The dream of a national railway became reality following Confederation, helping to transform our country by connecting people, places and products.

This week we’re asking you to share *your* dream Canadian train trip—the one you’ve already taken or are hoping to take.

This challenge ends May 31, 2017.

Where’s Your Favourite Swimming Spot? - MAY 18

Where’s Your Favourite Swimming Spot?

We Canadians love our water! The Niagara Falls Railway YMCA was one of many that appreciated this – it organized summer aquatic meets for local youth into the 1960s.

As we herald summer’s unofficial arrival this May long weekend, we’re asking: Where’s your favourite place to swim?

This challenge ends May 31, 2017.

Enjoy Tea Time Together - MAY 11

Enjoy Tea Time Together

For railway workers, tea time represented a welcome break in a long and challenging workday. For many of us, across cultures and generations, tea time is an opportunity to refuel, relax and connect with others.

In honour of Mother’s Day this month, take some time to enjoy a cup of tea and connect with Mom or another special person in your life.

This challenge ends May 31, 2017.

What Did You Learn At Summer Camp? - MAY 04

What Did You Learn At Summer Camp?

Many Railway Ys created programs for the young people in their communities, like the branch in Schreiber, on Lake Superior’s north shore. It held summer camps for local kids to keep them active and teach them vital skills, including first aid.

This week we want to know: What skill did you learn at summer camp?

This challenge ends May 31, 2017.

This Month’s Winners


Check back soon for this month’s winners!

April's Stop: Quebec

This month we stop in La Belle Province, Quebec, the birthplace of the YMCA movement in North America. The Montreal YMCA was one of the first to develop programs to meet the needs of Canada’s railway workers.

Join the Fun at LocalMOTION Live! - APR 27

Join the Fun at LocalMOTION Live! #YLM9

LocalMOTION goes on the road this Sunday, April 30 at YMCA Healthy Kids Day, a national day dedicated to improving the health and well-being of Canada’s kids.

Your challenge: Find a LocalMOTION Live! event at a YMCA Healthy Kids Day near you by visiting ymca.ca/healthykids and take the LocalMOTION Live! Challenge.

This challenge ends April 30, 2017.

Thank a Volunteer Today - APR 20

Thank a Volunteer Today #YLM8

Canada’s Railway YMCAs were established thanks to the dedicated efforts of a number of groups. One of the most important: volunteers, who remain as vital to the YMCA today as they were in those early years.

In honour of National Volunteer Week, we encourage you to thank a volunteer who has made a difference in your life.

This challenge ends April 30, 2017.

What’s in Your First Aid Kit? - APR 13

What’s in Your First Aid Kit? #YLM7

Building Canada’s railways was tough, remote and often dangerous work. Many Railway YMCAs offered first aid training to help workers better care for themselves and each other.

This week we want to know: What are your first-aid must-haves when you’re venturing away from home?

This challenge ends April 30, 2017.

Share Your Community Pride! - APR 06

Share Your Community Pride! #YLM6

Montreal was the birthplace of the YMCA movement in North America, and the Montreal YMCA became a key player in creating the first Railway YMCAs.

This week we invite you to share your community’s claim to fame. Did your town nurture a great athlete? Set a world record? Incubate a tech innovation?

This challenge ends April 30, 2017.

This Month’s Winners


  • Nathalie Gagnon

  • Stéphanie Gazaille

March's Stop: Atlantic Canada

In this first region of our cross-Canada journey you’ll find an original Railway Y: the YMCA of Greater Moncton, originally established in 1870.

Get outside! - MAR 23

Get outside! #YLM5

Railway Ys offered a place for recreation and fun both indoor and out. Now that spring has officially arrived, what’s your favourite “coming out of hibernation” activity? Is it visiting a maple syrup farm? Tuning up your bike? Planting seeds? Making chalk drawings on the ice-free sidewalk?

For this week’s challenge, inspire us with your favourite spring activity.

This challenge ends March 31, 2017.

Put a spring in your step! - MAR 16

Put a spring in your step! #YLM4

A popular activity at the Railway YMCAs was the community dance which provided a fun, welcoming atmosphere not only for railway workers, but for all members of the community. 
For this week’s challenge, kick up your heels solo or with a friend. If you need some inspiration, visit our friends at Canada’s National Ballet School to learn their choreography for their Sharing Dance DayOpen in new window event in June, also in celebration of Canada’s 150th. 

This challenge ends March 31, 2017.

Reading Room Challenge - MAR 09

Reading Room Challenge #YLM3

The only thing better than reading a good book is sharing one. A number of railway Ys had reading rooms to encourage literacy and social connection. Today’s YMCAs continue to nurture literacy through everything from newcomer language programs to child care curriculums to after-school homework clubs. 

For this week’s challenge, we want to know about a book by a Canadian author that you’d recommend, and why you love it! 

This challenge ends March 31, 2017.

Healthy Picnic Challenge - MAR 02

Healthy Picnic Challenge #YLM2

Providing and sharing meals at YMCAs helped to build healthier communities for Canada’s railway workers.

For this week's Challenge gather some friends, ask each person to prepare a healthy dish, and have a picnic - indoor or outdoor! 

This challenge ends March 31, 2017.

Challenge Celebration - FEB 20

Challenge Celebration #YLM1

Language classes were one of the services provided by the YMCA in railway communities to help railway workers build a sense of belonging. Learn how to introduce yourself by saying “Hello, welcome to [community name] in three languages. Ask your family and friends to join you!

This challenge ends February 27, 2017.

This Month’s Winners


  • Alison Mackellar

  • Elaine Baptie


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