YMCA, JCC, and Community Center Industry Trends for September

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As nonprofit leaders navigating a season of uncertainty, you’re managing more than ever before. It’s helpful to know where you stand. How does your YMCA, JCC, or community center stack up against your peers?

That’s where we come in. You need trusted information to inform decisions and tackle whatever may come next. Our monthly Insights and Impact report offers valuable insight into the state of the industry. From membership and registration trends to check-in and revenue tracking, we’ve got the information you need to propel your facility into a prosperous future.  

September Overview

September’s story is one of stabilization and seasonality.  As summer comes to a close and children return to school, revenue and registration rates are evolving to reflect the change in pace for families. A predicted seasonal downturn in registrations has caused revenue to decrease. However, check-ins and new joins have both increases, indicating that overall membership is continuing its trend toward stabilization and recovery post pandemic. Overall, the outlook for this month is one of strong rebuilding and a rapid return to normalcy. Whether it be for trusted childcare or inspiring group fitness, your community needs you now more than ever. Keep striving to serve and the numbers will follow.


Revenue for YMCAs, JCCs, and other organizations decreased 23.4% compared to August due to a stabilization in childcare revenue.

From August to September nonprofits saw an almost 19% increase in their percent back to normal. Childcare registrations slowed slightly from September compared to August, which has caused revenue to dip compared to last month. However, membership revenue specifically saw an increase in September, with 37.4% of total revenue sourced by membership in September, compared to only 26.8% in August.  

Chargebacks are still significantly higher compared to 2019 baseline

The September chargeback percentage for YMCAs, JCCs, and other organizations was 0.21%, significantly higher than the 0.03-0.05% baseline. This number has decreased from the the shutdown average of 0.7%. However, the fact that this percentage is high shows that the nation is still recovering from the economic impact from the pandemic, and many members are still struggling.

Key Takeaways

While registrations normalizing has impacted overall revenue, the Movement’s childcare revenue did increase 11% compared to 2019. This shows that even with the seasonality of childcare registrations, it is still a major factor driving revenue recovery during months that don’t typically see high registrations. Interestingly, organizations with $0-3M in revenue saw 7% more revenue in September of 2020 than the year prior. 


Member check-ins increased 11% in September compared to August. 

 Check-ins are continuing to trend upward in September after an expected seasonal decline in August as families returned to school. Check-ins also saw an increase in percent back to normal from 35.5% in August to 42% in September. As organizations work to ensure their members’ safety and build trust, their efforts are repaid with more member visits.

Key Takeaways

Check-ins are on the upswing for YMCAs, JCCs, and other organizations of all sizes. Organizations with $0-3M in revenue are continuing to see the second highest number of check-ins, just under those with $20M+ in revenue. They are also seeing the healthiest percent back to normal out of the four segments with 58% of check-ins compared to last year for September. While organizations with $20M+ in revenue are seeing the highest number of check-ins given their size, they are the furthest from back to normal with only 35% of check-ins in September compared to 2019.


Active memberships saw another dip with a 2% decrease in September compare to August. However, terminations have greatly decreased, and new joins saw a healthy increase.

While active memberships did dip in September, terminations decreased 33% and new joins increased 22% compared to last month. As a whole, active memberships have been holding steady around 77-78% back to normal over the last three months. These numbers are encouraging and prove that you are continuing to serve the needs of your community because people are still joining. 

Key Takeaways

Membership holds have been a major player in membership trends throughout COVID-19. Holds continue to soar above 2019 numbers. However, there has been a 10% decrease in September compared to August, showing that this trend continues to slow across the Movement. Slowly but surely, members are returning to their health and wellness nonprofit facilities.


YMCAs, JCCs, and other organizations continue to recover and serve their community through childcare and program offerings.

Childcare registrations did decrease 44% in September compared to August, however registrations still play a major role in recovery. Childcare numbers are currently at 160% of 2019 and programs are at 89% of 2019. 

Key Takeaways

Registrations for childcare and programs have supported revenue numbers as organizations pivoted to expand their childcare offerings. While year over year numbers are encouraging, seasonality plays a big role in this drastic comparison since traditionally, most registrations happen for childcare prior to the new year starting.