04 April 2014

No. 44 -- 25 August 1932

This letter is full of examples of how the Great Depression is affecting everyone. The Chicago YMCA College is seeing a drop-off in students and having trouble placing those who did graduate. Keith is still having difficulty finding work. YMCAs throughout the area are shuffling things around to make ends meet. Even George's local church is having to get creative to raise money. The good news: the family is healthy.

Mr. N.A. Hughes,
C/o Y.M.C.A. College,
5315 Drexel Avenue,
CHICAGO. Ill. U.S.A.

My dear Noel,

I was expecting a letter by a mail that arrived the other day, but evidently you did not write, as nothing came to hand. I understand the mail will be leaving here tomorrow morning at 3 a.m. and I am taking the opportunity of dropping you a line.

All the folk at home are exceedingly well, I am happy to say. Mother has completely recovered from her cold and although she hasn't quite the same spirit of “lift” as is customary with her she is still in good fettle.

"The [Chicago YMCA College]
President referred to the
presence of Glover and yourself
 at the College and spoke
 highly of you both. He also
drew attention to the fact that
a number of the men who had
graduated in June had not
been placed because of the
difficulties in the
American situation."
You will be interested to hear that a letter came to Mr. Crosby from President Jenkins, this last mail. The President referred to the presence of Glover and yourself at the College and spoke highly of you both. He also drew attention to the fact that a number of the men who had graduated in June had not been placed because of the difficulties in the American situation. In his letter, there was also a reference to the fact that there would be a possible drop in the number of students for the next school year, and as far as they could see at the present time they could care for about 200 students; that several of the Professors were already on the job endeavouring to secure part-time positions for men so that they could continue their training.

I would suggest, therefore, that you keep in close touch with the College and endeavour to get one of these part-time jobs. Put in a strong plea for it and if you can possibly pull it off you know all that it will mean to you.

Ruth is still at home and is considerably improved; in fact she is back again to her old health and strength again. Last weekend she made application for a job in the dentist’s surgery with the idea of perhaps spending a while at a job of that kind before returning to her training. She has not heard the result of her application.

" Joy will be 15 on Wednesday
of next week. She, of course,
 is beginning to feel that she is
quite grown up, and in fact to
 look at her you would think
 that she has made tremendous
development during the past year."
Keith has been battling around trying to locate a job but it is pretty difficult matter these days. Joy will be 15 on Wednesday of next week. She, of course, is beginning to feel that she is quite grown up, and in fact to look at her you would think that she has made tremendous development during the past year. Edith is sitting for her term exams this week and is putting in a lot of time swotting up matters which she thinks may be part of the examination work.

By the way I heard that our friend Jinkins, of the Father’s Club has spoken to Bob Way concerning your amplifier. It appears that he is a relative of Thomas who used to live in the building and who had the picture show, I think it was at Albert Park, and another one in the country. They are turning out some talkie apparatus for picture shows and he thought there might be a possibility of him disposing of your amplifier. I submitted the matter to him last week, but have not heard the result to date.

We say farewell to Charlie Jutsum tonight. We are making him a presentation, and I am hoping that it will be a substantial amount, because he will need it.

We are re-organising the Membership work and now making it a departmental matter so that the Younger Men’s Department and the Physical Department will each be responsible to go after the renewals of the men associated with those sections of the work. Records will be taken over by Alf Hines’ Department; Charlie Stradwick has been appointed Sub Editor of “Manhood” so that he will attend to that section of Charlie’s work. I do not quite know what we shall do with regard to the Industrial Work — we will probably appoint one of the Industrial Secretaries as Secretary to the Committee.

Next Tuesday we start a big job for unemployed boys. I have been developing this for the last two or three weeks and I think we shall have quite a good programme to put over. The plan is to communicate with over 1000 boys who are on the register of the Boys’ Employment Movement, and we will bring them into the Association building on four mornings in the work and possibly on one or two afternoons. The plan is to give them picture shows with industrial and scenic films and films of a general educational character, followed by lecture talks and discussions, and then a turn in the gym with organised games, followed by a swim in the pool. This, we think, will help to profitably occupy some of their enforced leisure. Of course, the whole thing will be done without cost to the boys.

Port Pirie is in South Australia,
north of Adelaide.
You will also be interested in hearing that Tru Barber who used to be Secretary at Ballarat, and who for the past couple of years has been in Perth, has been appointed as General Secretary of the Y.M. at Port Pirie, and will be taking up his new duties shortly.

The other day I managed to get confirmation of an amount of £100 as a contribution to the Port Pirie Association from the Associated Smelters. This has made possible Tru’s appointment to the position, in addition to which a fine effort was conducted by Frank Woodcraft and a good sum of money secured locally.

The Newcastle Secretary has also resigned, but I do not know just what the plans are likely to be concerning the filling of that vacancy. It is possible that Eric Price who was General Secretary of the Y.M.C.A. at Hastings may be in the running for the job.

Our little Church at South Hawthorn will be holding what it calls “Church Day” on September 7th. It is really an opportunity that will be given to the members and the adherents of the church to make a definite contribution to the church funds in lieu of holding a sale of work or something of the kind.

Conditions at the Church are pretty difficult as you can well imagine and this is one method that has been decided upon as a means of alleviating the position.

"In the Association we are still
battling along, although it is desperately
hard and money comes with difficulty.
As far as the house is concerned
we are down to 43 permanent
 residents and the number of
casuals coming in daily is
 ridiculously small."
In the Association we are still battling along, although it is desperately hard and money comes with difficulty. As far as the house is concerned we are down to 43 permanent residents and the number of casuals coming in daily is ridiculously small.

The Cafeteria is holding its own despite the difficulties we are facing, although of course the returns from that department are greatly diminished in comparison with other years.

I must finish off now, boy. This letter should reach you just prior to the commencement of your school work, and I do sincerely hope that it will be possible for you to have some part time job made open for you, so that the future may be to some extent assured.

We all unite in warmest love,
Yours affectionately
Dad

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