Mr. Speaker, in November the YMCA celebrated its 150th anniversary in Canada. It has played an enormous role in the lives of Canadians during the time of its existence.
A good example of a lifelong member is 91 year old Les Chater from Hamilton Mountain. Mr. Chater has been a member of the Y since he was eight. During the second world war Mr. Chater spent three harrowing years in a Japanese prisoner of war camp and credits his survival to what he learned at the Y. The Y not only helped him learn the importance of physical fitness but also instilled leadership skills and respect for his fellow man.
Today more than ever it is important that we recognize the positive mark the YMCA has left on the minds and spirits of countless Canadians, young and old.