National Disability & Diversity Manager, Belgravia Leisure & CEO Belgravia Foundation
Dr Jeff Walkley is the National Disability & Diversity Manager with Belgravia Leisure, and CEO of the Belgravia Foundation. Over four decades, Jeff has made exemplary contributions in sport, inclusion, physical activity, physical education, and disability. He has created sustained improvements in sport, physical education and inclusion in Australia. His achievements have led to his advice being sought by government departments and national and state sport organisations. His work has impacted on government policy leading to improved sport and recreation opportunities for children and people with a disability throughout Australia, and has been acknowledged through several industry and professional awards.
Take Charge Mental Health Program
Nationally, mental ill-health (MH) is the main reason people visit a GP, and is most prevalent among youth and young adults.
MH has a profound negative impact on physical and psychological health, detracts from opportunities for employment leading to financial hardship, and commonly culminates in social isolation, loneliness and poor social and community supports.
Research has proven engagement in exercise ameliorates MH, while concurrently producing improvements in co-morbidities (i.e. lethargy, sleep disturbance, overweight etc.).
The Take Charge (TC) program is an individualised (not a one-size-fits-all model) evidence-based program with confirmed success through trials in leisure facilities involving over 300 participants. Outcomes confirmed positive psychological, physical and social outcomes for participants, and additionally participants achieved a sense of control and choice through experiences encountered during the program.
Key to the success of TC is training designed to improve staff capacity to understand, support and provide service to people living with MH.