Special Program Focuses on Physical Literacy for Women
It is no secret that women are less active than men. Studies showed that fewer women than men are getting the recommended amount of physical activity in Canada (Guthgold et al., 2018). This is a growing worldwide gender gap due to various barriers a woman faces. A new immigrant woman faces even more unique challenges. Cultural differences, family commitments and missing out on learning fundamentals of physical literacy are all factors that often prevent immigrant women from seeking out physical activity opportunities (Canadian Women & Sport, 2020).
Recognizing the large number of newcomers to the community over the past years, the UNA has created Get Active! Physical Literacy for Women. This initiative aims to reduce psychosocial and financial barriers to participation in physical activities for women. Participants are paired with a physical activity mentor who helps find activities of interest and creates a plan to be more active.
The pilot project was launched in January 2021 with great success. Although there were limitations due to COVID-19, it made the initiative that much more impactful as it gave an opportunity for participants and mentors involved a way to connect during a time of social isolation. Mentor and mentees met on a regular basis virtually, and the group was able to meet monthly for physical-distanced fitness classes including a retro-style aerobics class!
We are currently taking applications for the next round of Get Active! starting in September 2021. There are fun activities planned including an outing to watch a Thunderbirds women’s ice hockey game. Space is limited and applications are being accepted until August 31, 2021. For more details about the program, please visit myuna.ca/get-active. For program inquiries, feel free to email Program Coordinator Josie at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you to UBC Wellness for grant funding for the pilot project, and the WISE Fund for the upcoming season of Get Active!