New scheme sees North Kesteven leisure centres welcome Ukrainian refugees

Better, which runs leisure centres across North Kesteven, have launched a new initiative to offer free use of the facilities to Ukrainian refugees.

Refugees based locally can make use of Sleaford Leisure Centre.
Refugees based locally can make use of Sleaford Leisure Centre.

The scheme is open to refugees who were living in the Ukraine prior to January 2022, along with all other international refugees who have been granted refugee or asylum status by the UK Government.

It offers Ukrainian refugees a free Better Health Centre membership or a lesson or course membership, for a fixed three-month period.

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The initiative has been structured to be as simple as possible, recognising the challenges already faced by this vulnerable group, says the organisation.

Individual refugees can apply directly, while family hosts, charities such as RESET, the Red Cross and the Refugee Council and Better’s own in-centre staff can also apply on behalf of a refugee by emailing either [email protected] to apply for a leisure centre membership or [email protected] to apply for a specific lesson or course programme.

Better manages Sleaford Leisure Centre, One NK leisure centre in NOrth Hykeham and Better Gym on East Road in Sleaford.

Applications should include the following information:

a. First Name

b. Last Name

c. Date of Birth

d. Email Address

e. Phone Number

f. Gender

g. Selected Leisure Centre

h. If applying for lesson or course membership, the name of selected lesson or course

Applicants are also asked to attach proof of eligibility for the scheme to their email. Better will accept any of the following documents:

· A letter from the Home Office confirming refugee or asylum status

· A Ukrainian Family Scheme Visa

· Proof of application to the UK Government as a Ukrainian refugee

Applicants for the free membership scheme will receive a reply within three working days.

Commenting on the new initiative Chris Ord, Partnership Manager for Better leisure centres in North Kesteven said: “We have all been moved by the plight of Ukraine’s refugees and those from other countries who have found sanctuary in the UK in recent years.

"We know the huge benefits that all forms of exercise can have our physical and mental well-being and hope that this initiative will play a small part in making refugees’ experience of life in the UK a positive one.”

For further information and details on how to apply visit: https://www.better.org.uk/news/new-scheme-sees-better-welcome-ukrainian-refugees