2016 Competition Working Group Meeting - Youth Outreach Update

Posted: December 15, 2016 03:07 PM

Outreach Volunteer Structure, New Task Force, Program Strategies Discussed

Colorado Springs, Colo. (Dec. 15, 2016) – USA Ultimate’s Competition Working Group was in Denver Dec. 3-4, for its annual meeting to discuss various aspects of the organization’s programs, including outreach programs and the youth, college, club and beach divisions. The meeting included 10 USA Ultimate members, two members of the board of directors and 23 key volunteers and was held over two days. Following the meeting, we are releasing summaries of each smaller group’s discussions. The first two recaps, from the youth competition and college divisions, were released last week, followed by the beach division recap. The final recap will come from the club division. 

The youth outreach working group consists of USA Ultimate Manager of Youth and Education Programming Dan Raabe and USA Ultimate Coordinator of Youth and Education Programming Sarah Powers along with National Outreach Director Chuck Gargaly, Girls’ National Outreach Director Rachel Johnson and Girls’ Ultimate Movement Working Group Chair Heather Ann Brauer.

2016 Youth Outreach Working Group
Brauer, Gargaly, Powers, Raabe, Johnson

The youth outreach working group used the weekend to celebrate some of 2016’s successes, welcome Chuck Gargaly as the new national outreach director, discuss the outreach program volunteer structure, start work on a new task force and talk about some specific outreach campaigns and possibilities. 

In 2016, nearly 1,300 kids participated in USA Ultimate outreach programs. Between the Learn to Play program and the Girls’ Ultimate Movement (GUM), more than 65 clinics were held throughout the year. Thirty-five of those clinics were GUM clinics which reached approximately 600 girls around the country. In addition, 35 coaching clinics were held which included nearly 600 coaches. The outreach working group is rightfully proud of and excited about all that was accomplished in 2016 and looking forward to expanding the reach of USA Ultimate’s outreach programs even further in 2017.

Gargaly was recently named the new national outreach director, making this his first Competition Working Group meeting. The outreach working group took the opportunity to get him up to speed on existing programs and caught up with the people he will be working with most closely in his new role. The outreach program volunteer structure is continually evolving. The working group discussed plans for training and providing direction and resources for outreach volunteer staff, as well as strategies for recruiting high-quality volunteers to fill vacant positions. The goal is to expand the outreach network into local communities through team contacts and local disc associations.  

The outreach working group also began work on a new task force within the youth outreach programs’ umbrella. The new task force will focus on equity and diversity and will working in collaboration with, and under the direction of, the USA Ultimate Board of Directors’ Diversity and Equity Working Group. Val Belmonte, one of the current members of the board’s Diversity and Equity Working Group, as well as newly elected board member Heather Ann Brauer were involved in the discussion, beginning the collaboration between the two groups. The task force will be headed up by a core group of staff and volunteers, including Dan Raabe; Sarah Powers; Chuck Gargaly; and Colorado State Outreach Coordinator Hannah Jones, who holds a Ph.D. in education with a focus on diversity and equity and has taught on diversity and equity topics to students of all ages. There is potential to add a couple other experts to the task force, as well. Initial steps will include preliminary research, including outreach to develop community connections followed up by surveying of potential target communities. 

Several girls-specific outreach programs were also discussed, including the GUM poster girl series and ongoing work with the Women’s Sports Foundation on curriculum modifications and marketing materials that will be used in their Go Girl Go! materials. The youth outreach working group also worked with the youth competition working group to develop strategies and communication plans that will help provide targets for the use of existing outreach programs like Learn to Play and GUM events in areas where kids being introduced to the sport can readily be tied into existing local playing opportunities.

Stay tuned to usaultimate.org for more summaries from the 2016 Competition Working Group meeting. The club division recap is up next. 


Previous 2016 Competition Working Group Updates:


2016 Competition Working Group

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