Welcome to the East Side.
One Branch. Two beginnings.
The Kaimuki-Wai‘alae YMCA has its roots in two clubs practically down the street from one another. The first was a YMCA Boys' Club started in 1925 at the Kaimuki Japanese Language School on 10th Avenue. The second was a Y’s Boys’ Club that used a “shack” on 9th Avenue. In 1939, the shack and the land beneath it were donated to the Y by Mr. and Mrs. Morita Kosasa, whose sons, Neil and Sidney, had benefitted from Y programs. The “shack” was soon remodeled and became the Palolo YMCA Community Center.
Meanwhile, the Boys’ Clubs at the nearby Japanese School were also thriving. Then WWII hit. The school closed and donated its property to the Y. Now, with room to spare, the Palolo YMCA joined its sister club at the school, and together they became the Kaimuki YMCA.
Although the school had donated its property to the Y, there was still a mortgage to be paid. Guess who paid it so the Y could own the property free and clear? Neil Kosasa, the son of Palolo’s first major benefactor.
Young and Young at Heart
As people moved farther east, the Kaimuki YMCA was closed and a new branch was built on Wai‘alae Avenue in 1962. Renamed the Kaimuki Wai‘alae YMCA, the branch focuses on programs for youth, teens, family, and seniors. The Y’s "Over 90s Club,” a group of proud members aged 90+ who stay active and embrace life through Y fitness and friendships.