The UFIT Capacity Building package guides club /facility owners and managers in setting up partnerships at a local level that will facilitate on-going and sustainable collaborations with local disability service organizations. This approach will enable the club to develop at a level and scale that can grow as confidence, experience and capacity within the club grows.
UFIT Clubs advocate for inclusive services and disseminate information about UFIT among local disability service providers (DSP). This is a critical part of the UFIT Program.
Disability service providers (as well as other organizations!) may have not worked previously with sports, fitness, health clubs. Therefore, an explanation on how the UFIT partnership will be a win-win for both organizations, should be provided. Emphasize that UFIT is strengths based, building upon and marrying the strengths of all stakeholders. The UFIT partnership will set a precedent for both organizations, providing scope for further collaborations. This will increase a club’s usage and membership as well as providing new opportunities for the DSP clients.
Regarding participants with disabilities, the same principle applies. Some participants with disabilities have never had a positive physical activity experience. How can they know what means to be a UFIT Participant? The UFIT program should be used as a way to introduce participants into fitness and physical activity. The benefits of physical activity can be listed, but what will impact them the most, will be their own lived experience. This aspect will be crucial on determining participant’s adherence to physical activity and, consequently, membership retention.