United States Adaptive Recreation Center (USARC)

aka Adaptive Recreation Center, U.S.   |   Big Bear Lake, CA   |  http://www.usarc.org/

Mission

Founded in 1983, the mission of the United States Adaptive Recreation Center (USARC) is to open doors to people with disabilities by providing access to challenging and adventurous recreation that increases their sense of health and well being. USARC is committed to building self-confidence by enabling personal achievement, developing awareness of potential and increasing the ability to overcome limitations. USARC gives people hope, dignity and respect, ultimately improving their quality of life.

Ruling year info

1983

Executive Director

Mr. Tom Peirce RTC, CTRS

Main address

PO Box 2897

Big Bear Lake, CA 92315 USA

Show more contact info

Formerly known as

California Handicapped Skiers

EIN

95-3872771

NTEE code info

Services to Promote the Independence of Specific Populations (P80)

Health - General and Rehabilitative N.E.C. (E99)

Other Recreation, Sports, or Leisure Activities N.E.C. (N99)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

According to the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP), there are 54 million Americans living with a disability.

Getting 60 minutes of physical activity per day is the national recommendation of the Department of Health and Human Services.

The percentage of children who are overweight more than tripled between 1971 and 2009, exploding from 5.8% in 1971 to 18.4% in 2009. (Ogden et al, 2007; Anderson, 2009) Six out of ten of these children will continue to be overweight or obese at age 12. (NICHD, 2006).

Children with disabilities, as well as adults, face even higher risk of obesity due to restricted mobility or sedentary lifestyles resulting from a lack of programming and opportunities for physical exercise and stimulation.  Especially prevalent amongst the disabled youth are the constant challenges to "fit in", while at the same time so many of the activities taken for granted by able-bodied persons are not readily available.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Therapeutic Recreation for Persons with Disabilities

From December through March, physical and cognitive limitations are redefined through skiing and snowboarding. Using the best adaptive equipment and teaching techniques available, private one-on-one instruction maximizes each participant's potential for success. Mono-skis, bi-skis and outriggers allow beginners to quickly feel the freedom of gliding down the mountain while those with more skill and determination take on the advanced slopes.

Population(s) Served

From June through September USARC takes to the water of Southern California and provides outdoor therapeutic recreation instruction in water skiing, kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, personal watercraft, fishing, sailing and cycling.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Total number of students participating in private lessons

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

Therapeutic Recreation for Persons with Disabilities

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This number reflects the number of unduplicated persons with disabilities participating in our programs each year. Each person takes and average of 3 lessons per year.

Number of students receiving personal instruction and feedback about their performance

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

Therapeutic Recreation for Persons with Disabilities

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Number reflects the annual number of unduplicated persons with disabilities receiving personal instruction and feedback about their performances. Each participant receives an average of 3 lessons.

Number of participants who would recommend program to others

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

Therapeutic Recreation for Persons with Disabilities

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

100% of program participants report that they would recommend USARC programs to others. This information is gathered through our online survey tool, SurveyMonkey.

Number of participants engaged in programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

Therapeutic Recreation for Persons with Disabilities

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Number reflects the unduplicated persons with disabilities engaged in USARC programs each year.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The mission of the United States Adaptive Recreation Center (USARC) is to teach skills, through challenging outdoor therapeutic recreation programs, that in turn open doors of opportunity to persons with disabilities.  As evidenced in participant surveys, USARC programming improves self esteem, health and well being by enabling personal achievement, developing awareness of potential and increasing the ability to overcome limitations.  These processes result in the unearthing of hope, confidence and self-reliance by USARC participants, which are in turn applied to other aspects of their lives, be that personal, professional, scholastic or more.

A recent survey of outdoor therapeutic recreation programs affirmed the USARC's commitment to provide its services at a lower cost than any of its contemporaries, ensuring financial "access".

The survey reinforces how the USARC helps alleviate poverty in low income families by delivering its services for fees that are a fraction of what the services cost.  In other words, virtually every therapeutic recreation lesson provided includes some level of scholarship, and the USARC is proud of this achievement.

Very often, people with disabilities and their families face high medical and living costs, limited employment opportunities and medical and specialized equipment expenses. Being able to participate in outdoor recreation is a real thrill and provides a boost in self-esteem including ultimately, an improvement in quality of life.

USARC's primary goal is that no person with a disability is prohibited from participating based on their inability to pay.

USARC currently offers a vast array of outdoor recreation opportunities for persons with disabilities. In Spring and Summer months, instructional programs include kayaking, water skiing, personal watercraft, stand up paddleboarding, fishing, cycling, camping and sailing. These programs are offered at Big Bear Lake and Lake Arrowhead on a regular basis.

In winter months, based in facilities donated by Starwood Resort Group, programs include snowboarding, snow shoeing and alpine skiing. These lessons are provided seven days a week between December 1 and March 31 each year.

USARC provides six different training opportunities for volunteers. The training is mandatory and delivers information about disabilities specific to outdoor pursuits, adaptive equipment, teaching strategies, program delivery, policies and procedures and safety training.

USARC conducts two annual fundraising events open to our communities. The Peak to Peak Bicycle ride is held each October and sports a five day, fully supported bike ride from Big Bear Lake to Mammoth. In March each year, our annual ski-a-thon is hosted by Bear Mountain Resort and like Peak to Peak, attracts participants, volunteers and the community as a whole.

USARC has a proven track record of sound fiscal management and program growth. We are proud of our fiscal responsibility during these challenging financial times as evidenced by our fundraising and administrative costs at 9% in our most recent 990. USARC charges a nominal fee to participants so that no person is prohibited from participating based on their inability to pay. The organization subsidizes 76% of the actual cost of each lesson through our annual membership drive, special events and foundations such as yours.

Recognized as a national leader in outdoor therapeutic recreation and education, we are happy to report our recent program accomplishments.

Our Executive Director was selected by the United States Olympic Committee to attend the Paralympics in Vancouver in 2010 and in 2009 we were named the National Winner of the OMC Foundation's “Take 'em Boating" Award that supports marine industry environmental and educational programs. In both 2004 and 1999, USARC was given a Merit Award from the California Park and Recreation Society and in 1997, The National Safe Boating Council awarded our organization the Boston Whaler Youth Program of Excellence Award for outstanding contributions to safer boating through education.

While our primary focus is therapeutic recreation program services to persons with disabilities in the Southwestern United States, USARC staff members are recognized as leaders in the therapeutic recreation industry and consult with recreation agencies, marinas, schools and ski resorts throughout the country and world. We have most recently sent staff to training and program implementation projects in Andorra, Scotland, Thailand, New York City, Spain, Austria, Italy, Korea and France.

British Association of Snowsport Instructors (BASI) - BASI has contracted USARC staff over the last fifteen years to assist with the development and implementation of their adaptive ski instructor education and certification programs. This includes the development of written training materials, the education of staff, the transporting of adaptive equipment and the administration of certification events. Staff has traveled to Scotland, France, Andorra and Italy for these events.

National Ability Center (NAC) - NAC has called upon the USARC staff for their international therapeutic recreation projects. This includes a diverse array of recreation skill content including ski instructor and disabled athlete training programs in Spain and Italy and cycling, tennis, basketball and archery programs in Thailand.

Disability Snowsport UK (DSUK) - This group arranges trips for UK skiers with disabilities to USARC for skiing and winter recreation. Staff exchange programs are promoted and encouraged between USARC and DSUK staff members.

Special Olympics - The USARC is a training and competition venue for winter Special Olympics sports. Staff have been selected and volunteered to serve as alpine coaches for international Special Olympic

In the past year, USARC served a total of 816 unduplicated persons with disabilities with 2,141 outdoor therapeutic recreation lessons. Of the 816 persons, 37% are female, 45% are children aged 18 and under and 22% are from female headed households. 47% of all participants resides in households with extremely low, low and low-moderate income households.

37% of participants reside in Los Angeles County, 17% in Orange County, 14% in San Diego County, 18% in San Bernardino, 7% in Riverside and 7% from other Counties, States and Countries.

The ethnic origin of participants breaks down as follows: Caucasian 47%, Hispanic 23%, Asian 9%, Black African American 3%, Asian and White 3%, Other 1%, American Indian Alaska Native and White 1% and did not specify 13%.

USARC utilizes a talented cadre of 182 volunteers who travel from throughout Southern California to assist with programs. The volunteers reside in the following counties - Los Angeles 23%, Orange 20%, San Diego 5%, San Bernardino 43%, Riverside 5% and other counties, states and countries round out the total with 4%.

USARC faces an impending move of its' program office. Plans are underway for a new base development, replacing our current 400 square foot building with an expansive, full service Base Lodge. We look forward to working with funders and Resort owners for a smooth relocation.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    SMS text surveys, Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Suggestion box/email,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve,

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback,

Financials

United States Adaptive Recreation Center (USARC)
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

United States Adaptive Recreation Center (USARC)

Board of directors
as of 11/18/2019
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Mr John Mattos

PricewaterhouseCoopers

Term: 2018 - 2022


Board co-chair

Mr Fred Liebel

C3 Risk and Insurance

Term: 2018 - 2022

Bruce Allen

The Showpros Group - VP Marketing/Development

William Webster

Association for Corporate Growth Los Angeles - CEO

Art Krietenberg M.D.

Physician

Brian Harvey

Buchalter/Nemer - Attorney

Jeff Lapin

Attorney/Consultant

Fred Leibel

Michael Ehrenfeld Company - Insurance

John Mattos

PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP - Accountant

George Stoneman M.D.

Physician, E.N.T.

Meredith Janssen

Professor/Director Recreation Therapy CSU Long Beach

Windy Sirignano

Southland Marketing, Owner

Jay Vickers

Retired, Attorney

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/15/2019

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

No data

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data