Us Active

Us Activities

Enjoyable, high quality sports and physical activities for young people

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Improving young people’s mental health through sport and exercise

Our mission is to engage young people in a sport or fitness activity of their choice in order for them to experience the mental health benefits of physical activity and exercise. We work with young people either one to one or in a group setting and our activities are free.

The US Journey

The programmes we arrange for individual young people are personalised and based on their needs and interests so each ‘US Journey’ will be different. We encourage each young person to identify their own choice of sport or activity because we believe this will make it easier for exercise to become an enduring part of their life.

Each young person will join US at a different stage in their wellbeing and fitness journey, and so this is our starting point. Together we create a plan that provides the right support and removes the barriers to getting and staying active: support from family and friends, our dedicated team and coaches, local venues and sessions.

With ongoing support and regular reviews with one of our team, each US journey will change as our participants become increasingly independent and confident being active.

What might an US Journey Look like?

It might be hard to imagine what an US Journey might look like. Imagine a young person who is referred by their GP. They are conscious about their weight and have low self-esteem and social anxiety which is made worse by being with unfamiliar people.

Following a discussion with the young person and their parents, US arranges some personal training sessions with a trainer working in a small, quiet gym.

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The young person works really hard on their training and becomes more confident in their technique. At a similar time there are two other young people working with a coach at a similar progress point. US creates a small group fitness class for these participants to build on their progress and provide an opportunity to continue with their fitness.

The group work together regularly with the trainer in the gym, becoming fitter and improving their wellbeing; the young people are building a friendship, and becoming more socially confident.

The final stage in the young person’s journey is that having developed a relationship with the staff and other members of the gym, they begin attending independently of the group with a friend.

WHAT HAPPENS AFTER I CONTACT US ACTIVE?

Us Active supports young people who are affected by mental health issues. These are the steps to getting involved

Focussed one to one sessions

Initially some of our young people may need to learn the skills related to an activity; others may need to develop their self confidence to become accomplished and feel good about taking part.

In this case we can find a specialist coach/trainer to initially work one to one with a young person. This ensures a personalised programme which provides the learning or emotional support to progress the young person onto the next stage of their journey.

Support to access community provision

There is a huge range of sport and exercise provision available in our communities – leisure centres and gyms, clubs or organisations offering sporting activities or even things that can be done outdoors in your local area.

However, US understands how making that first step to start a new activity can be hard on your own, and that’s why we can offer the support of a keyworker to help a young person make that step and beat that fear!

US Groups

We develop groups which evolve from shared interests of the young people we are working with – our online yoga group or a workout class. These are a great opportunity to develop confidence and friendships while maintaining exercise and also developing commitment . which can help to achieve personal goals.

Throughout the year – usually during school holidays – we offer group activities for our young people to get active, maybe try something new, and to meet other people.

Working with other organisations

US works with partner organisations who have pre-existing groups of young people who are in our target group and would benefit from our support to become active. We work with the young people and their staff team to identify activities they’d be interested in doing together and arrange the sessions.

This could either be one off events or a regular programme. We welcome any organisations getting in touch to discuss working together with a group of young people.

Why We’re Getting Active

Research confirms that sports and physical fitness activities empower young people experiencing mental health and emotional well-being issues to:

  • Feeling good and have fun

  • Improved mental and physical health

  • Becoming more confidence

  • Improved self-esteem and self image

  • Reduced isolation and new friendships

  • Being more engagement in other aspects of life, including school or work.

Meet The Us Active Team

Administration

Suzanne McFarlane

Chief Operaing Officer

Lucy Steel

Referrals and Activities Co-ordinator

Sarah Cooper

Administrator

Key Workers

Alex Rowland

Key Worker

Beth Veitch

Key Worker

Dani Atkinson

Key Worker

Lois Egerton

Key Worker

Meet the Trainer

If you’d also like to know more about the trainers US Active work with, visit our ‘Meet the Trainers’ page here.

Transforming Lives Through Sport

“I used to hate meeting new people, but although still shy I am growing my friendship group. People tell me that I look so different. I smile and look them in the eye. I am beginning to believe that I have an exciting future!”
"I feel happier and can do things I never thought possible. This has increased my confidence and self-belief. I no longer feel isolated and chronically anxious."
Testimonial Item

Recent Activities

June News

June News

June Recap We took the opportunity this month to catch up with several young people who, with our support, have been attending their local gym. Their feedback highlighted the positive impact regular exercise has had on their mental health and overall well-being:...

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Volunteer Week 2024

Volunteer Week 2024

During Volunteer Week 2024, we wanted to say a big thank you to Sophia!

Sophia began volunteering for US Active in September 2023, and has been involved in all sorts...supporting fundraising events, youth voice, social media and events for young people.

Last week, Sophia attended our Wellness Workshop at Sound Mind and Body. Read her blog which captures her thoughts about the event and the themes being promoted.

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May News

May News

May was a month of growth, awareness, and community for our charity. We were thrilled to support 12 new participants in their journey towards becoming more active. We emphasized the importance of movement during Mental Health Awareness Week, aligning perfectly with...

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What Happens Next?

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More About Us

Find out more about what we do by visiting out blog.