Begun in 2004, the Performing Arts program is one of Tutti’s core programs and involves 16 young adults with intellectual disability working three days a week with professional artists to develop their voice, movement and drama skills. Together they form our Performing Arts Ensemble which has produced two original works and been involved in collaborations with State Opera, Cirkidz and other Adelaide companies. The aim of this program is to develop professional pathways for the performers involved, and some are already sought after as singers, actors and movement artists.
A growing focus of Tutti’s programmes is to increase the physical activity of participants. To that end they sought a small grant to purchase specific kinds of gym equipment which the artists can use to support an improvement in their general level of fitness and muscle condition.
Participants’ lives outside of Tutti are sadly inactive and many participants are already overweight. Obesity has long been identified as a problem within the disability sector due to poor education around the importance of exercise as part of everyday life. This is not surprising given the poor mobility of many people with intellectual disability.
The equipment Tutti identified as most useful for their artists, and which everyone will be able to use, is:
- Exercise mats
- Resistance bands
- Fitness balls
Tutti will develop an individual plan with each of the 16 participants based on their age, weight, mobility and level of fitness. Over six months each participant will be involved in a 45 minute exercise schedule as a daily warm up activity prior to commencing rehearsals. With the assistance of the Performing Arts tutors, each participant will be involved in the setting of achievable targets and monitoring of these.
UCF were pleased to grant the requested $1,540 to enable Tutti to purchase the fitness equipment.