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Universal Service

A universal service will only be established where there is clear demand and a suitable gap in the market. We have forecasted to mirror the number of targeted services in each district, however this will be subject to the below criteria. Where possible the universal service will be co-located with the targeted service to ensure the smoothest transition from targeted to universal and vice versa.

NYS will set the following criteria for universal sessions established as part of this programme:

  • Location; where possible the universal sessions will be co-located with targeted sessions to aid transition. Where this is not possible we will use non-threatening locations which will be local and accessible to communities. Village halls and community centres are popular and familiar locations. Further to this, the facility taking ownership of the sessions will have an increased success factor.
  • Type of activity; consultation with the communities shows a range of activities help maintain interest. They also need to be adaptable for the varying levels of balance, ability and strength. Being able to progress is important which can be achieved from seated versions of games to standing. Popular sports have been boccia, kurling and bowls.
  • Equipment; as part of our pilot we established that providing each group with start-up equipment enhanced their ability to sustain the sessions. This equipment would allow for sports specific activity and general games to take place.
  • Sustainability; referrals and delivery; all activities are focused around ensuring a sustainable group is established. Support from professional delivery staff is an important part of setting up the group with a view to transition to community ownership. This will happen on a delivery level through periodic visits from the member of staff delivering the targeted service in the area. Additionally NYS will support the group to identify appropriate delivery staff to continue the sessions as well as a local 'champion'. Previous experience has shown this could be achieved through funding applications, self-financing from participant fees or through recruitment of volunteers to deliver the sessions. We will work with each group to determine the minimum level of qualification and training that is suitable for each activity.
  • Sustainability - Club models; All groups will receive ongoing support from the designated member of staff from NYS. This will be to ensure the pathway of referrals up and down continue but also to help the club/group develop and thrive in a strong and sustainable manner. This will include helping them determine the most appropriate structure (voluntary group, charity, facility owned) and ensure they are operating most effectively.

To implement the project we will establish a global budget for universal sessions. This will be used effectively and flexibly by the project coordinator to support the new sessions in the most appropriate way. An example of this could be that a group may only need to train a walk leader and they can begin to operate, right through to a new club, which may need support to buy in a coach, train a new workforce and buy some equipment. These sessions will receive ongoing support from the project coordinator to ensure they are sustainable and thriving