Vision, Mission and Membership
The Recreation and Parks Association of the Yukon (RPAY) is located on the traditional territory of Kwanlin Dün First Nation and the Ta’an Kwäch’än Council. RPAY envisions “a Yukon where recreation and parks are essential and integral to quality of life; where all citizens engage in recreation experiences that contribute to physical, mental and social wellbeing; and where recreation connects people to their communities and outdoor environments”. RPAY’s mission is to “strengthen the capacity of Yukon communities to engage their citizens in active, healthy lifestyles through recreation and parks”. RPAY has a membership that includes First Nation communities, schools, municipalities, unincorporated communities, recreation leaders and individuals from throughout the Yukon.
How RPAY is Supporting Inclusion and Access for Persons with Disabilities
RPAY supports inclusive opportunities through the Rural Healthy Eating Active Living (RHEAL) Leader and Winter Active for Life (WAFL) programs. These are designed to increase opportunities for physical activity and to increase equity for vulnerable and/or disadvantaged populations. They provide opportunities for physical activity that address barriers to participation.
The RHEAL Leader program provides opportunities for physical activity and promotes active lifestyles in Yukon communities. RHEAL Leader programs are welcoming, accessible, and inclusive and do not restrict participation because of cost, equipment needs, or transportation. Examples of this program include: Therapeutic Riding and Ground Work, Osteofit and Get Up & Go, Seniors’ Fitness and Restorative Yoga.
The Winter Active for Life (WAFL) program promotes, introduces and encourages Yukoners of all ages to be physically active outdoors during long winter months when patterns of inactivity are most prevalent. The program focuses on activities that require minimal infrastructure and can be done over the lifespan. For example, The WAFL Equipment Library offers Yukon communities cross-country ski equipment, snowshoes and kick sleds on loan to support opportunities to be winter active. RPAY works to promote and provide access to these programs with recognition given to the funder, the Yukon Government.
Community Spotlights: Special Olympics Yukon, Inclusion Yukon, Learning Disabilities Association of Yukon, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Society Yukon, ElderActive Recreation Association
Organizations at the forefront of promoting inclusion in recreation for Yukoners of all abilities include:
Special Olympics Yukon is dedicated to enriching the lives of Yukoners with an intellectual disability through sport.
Inclusion Yukon advocates, educates and delivers programs that support the inclusion of individuals with disabilities.
Learning Disabilities Association of Yukon is a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing awareness of learning differences, and supporting children, youth and adults with learning difficulties or disabilities.
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Society Yukon fosters accepting and educated communities, where individuals with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome have access to the same opportunities as everyone else.
ElderActive Recreation Association, grounded in an active living philosophy, seeks to enhance the lives of senior/elder Yukoners through events, programs, and education designed to develop and maintain health and wellness in body, mind, and spirit.