UN Selects Go Fit’s Public-Private Model as Best Practice Example

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By Frances Marcellin May 21, 2022

The public-private company of GO fit supports the UN Sustainable Development Goals – has increased the number of female members and runs projects to support children in situations of social exclusion / GO fit

Go Fit has been selected by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) as a best practice example for public-private partnership (PPP) collaboration.

The company’s core values, model and achievements were showcased in a case study at the 6th UNECE International PPP Forum, in Barcelona. The event highlighted successful, people-focused PPP collaborations that have the potential to move people towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out by the United Nations in their 2030 agenda.

To date, Go Fit has invested in assets worth €200 million working with public entities and an audit by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) showed that social impact of its PPP model in Spain at €300 million ($314 million) per year.

“The Go Fit case study is another example of the alignment of the private sector to promote projects of public interest, namely the promotion of social cohesion and the protection of the planet, while being an engine to stimulate local prosperity,” said Pedro Neves, UN Advisor and Consultant on SDG Implementation and Smart Sustainable Cities, who led the case study selection process.

“The United Nations has estimated that $3.9 billion a year is needed by society around the world to achieve the goals set out in the Sustainable Development Goals. Yet total government and public sector spending is only $1.4 trillion. It is the capital, the expertise and the spirit of the private sector that has the ability to invest the rest,” he said.

The company – part of Ingesport – has 20 fitness and wellness centers in Spain and Portugal, an Italian club opening planned for 2023 and UK projects in development. It launched its PPP business model in 2009.

Under PPP agreements, Go Fit bids on long-term contracts to design, build, operate and manage facilities on public lands. This sees the company working primarily with local councils, but it can also involve church, schools and community clubs.

Go Fit initially targeted the Spanish market after data showed that 67% of the population were inactive and the costs of running council-run leisure centers in Madrid were around 120 million euros, with only 25 million euros covered by member payments.

“Imagine how many schools, how many police officers, how many other vital services the city could have with an extra 95 million euros,” Go Fit founder and president Gabriel Sáez said in a statement. exclusive interview with HCM at the time of launch.

“Go Fit is building the wellness infrastructure of forward-thinking cities that will serve families and communities for generations to come,” Sáez said. “It is an honor to be recognized by the United Nations for the spirit and passion our team demonstrates every day to impact society and protect our environment. We are proud of this recognition, not only for what we do, but also for how we do it as a truly people-oriented organization.

Two of the UN SDGs focus on good health and well-being and sustainable cities and communities.

Widening economic and social inequalities are seen as a problematic factor in achieving good overall health, and this is an area of ​​focus for Go Fit.

“We believe that 100% of the population should have access to extraordinary, high-quality, evidence-based services that help improve the well-being of the whole family at an affordable price,” said the case study of GoFit.

“For us, it is critically important to see high levels of participation among older people and women. A study by the Go Fit Lab showed that women are underrepresented in all forms of sport and physical activity in society, with the exception of Go Fit facilities, where they are overrepresented.

While members pay €37 per month, there are concessions for the economically disadvantaged and members’ children do not pay, making inclusion more affordable for families.

Go Fit is involved each year in more than a hundred projects aimed at reducing inequalities, such as support for local sports teams and access to sport for socially excluded children.

According eurostat 24.2% of children in the EU are at risk of social exclusion – more than adults of working age and older people.


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