Meet the Teams of Team UCP!

It’s hard to believe that the Cleveland Triathlon is only four days away! UCP of Greater Cleveland would like to extend a huge “Thank you!” to all of our amazing teams.  We appreciate the time, dedication and hard work it takes to participate in the Cleveland Triathlon and raise awareness and funds for UCP of Greater Cleveland.

It is not too late to support your favorite Team!  Make a donation in their honor by clicking one of the pictures below:

Let’s Meet the teams!

Team Alex

Alex 13(2)

Team Anthony


Team Children’s Services

CS Collage

Team Devan


Team Drew


Team Emily


Team Ethan

Team Ethan

Team Julia

Julia 6

Team Kenna


Team Logan


Team Madelyne

Madelyne 7

Team Myles

Myles 5

Team Niko

Niko 11

Team Payton


Team Peyton


Team Rizzo

Team Scott

Scott 7

Team Turtle for Matt Pajak

Turtle 15

Team Tyler

Tyler 27

Team Zeeva




Be Inspired to Tri! at the Cleveland Triathlon on Sunday, July 27, 2014

at North Coast Harbor, Downtown Cleveland

 TeamUCP Logo 1


Presented by:

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Team Rizzo

This week UCP of Greater Cleveland is happy to welcome Julia’s mom, Heather Rizzo, as our guest blog contributor. This will be the second year in a row that Team Rizzo has participated in the Cleveland Triathlon. Go Team Rizzo!











Our daughter Julia started receiving therapy services at UCP of Greater Cleveland in spring of 2013. Last year we decided to participate as part of Team UCP at the Cleveland Triathlon because as a family, we enjoy running & bike riding, so we thought it would be great to do something we enjoy & help raise money for UCP, which is such a wonderful organization.

My husband, John, was the only one with triathlon experience. He had done a Sprint Tri in July 2010 to raise money for the Cleveland Sight Center, the Ronald McDonald House of Cleveland and Cleveland Clinic Children’s Hospital.

We spent lots of time training on the towpath trail with Julia and her brother, John. We pushed Julia during runs and pulled her on rides in her Wike bike trailer. Julia loves to be outside and especially loves riding in the bike trailer, and she will often let you know with a little yell when you start to go too slowly!

Last year we did the sprint distance as a relay. We requested a volunteer for the swim, and UCP connected us with Maggie. She did a great job & hung out with the rest of Team Rizzo during the race. My husband did the bike leg and I did the run.

Rizzo 5It was a truly inspiring experience. One way or another, we always include Julia in everything we do. To be able to include her in a triathlon was very special. Not many five year olds can say that they have finished a triathlon. It was also very inspiring to see all the other families finish the race. We watched many families cross the finish line and each showed such strength, determination, and perseverance that it would be hard to not be inspired.

This year we are going to do a sprint relay again. We’re so happy Maggie agreed to do the swim leg again this year. She has become a part of Team Rizzo!

We are very lucky to have a long list of family & friends that are part of Team Rizzo. Julia’s Aunt Carolyn volunteered last year, and Julia’s grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends were spectators cheering her on when she crossed the finish line.

Rizzo 8We are “Inspired to TRI” for the second year because UCP is a great organization that does so much for Julia and kids like Julia that we are happy to be able to help raise money for them. The race is so well run and it was such a joy to participate in it last year, we absolutely wanted to be part of it again. You can’t explain how good you feel when you see the kids and families cross the finish line.



If you would like to support Team Rizzo and UCP of Greater Cleveland, please make a donation on their Cleveland Triathlon fundraising page at

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There’s Still Time – Volunteer for Team UCP at the Cleveland Triathlon!

UCP of Greater Cleveland is the official charity of the Cleveland Triathlon, and as part of our agreement with the race producers, we are in charge of recruiting  and coordinating the activities of the majority of volunteers during the event. Volunteers not only ensure a smooth and successful race, but they also contribute to UCP’s ability to raise funds for services as the Official Charity of the Cleveland Triathlon. For every volunteer that assists during the race weekend, UCP receives a donation from the race producers.

Watching families participate in the Cleveland Triathlon is one of the most inspirational moments to witness.  Disabilities touch so many people, either through their own personal experience or that of a loved one. Be inspired! Be a part of Team UCP’s success by participating as a volunteer!

An event of this scale takes a huge commitment of manpower, and we cannot do it without your help. Volunteers are needed for the following stations:

  • Goody Bag Stuffing – If you aren’t able to make it on Sunday, but would still like to help, volunteers are needed to stuff racer goody bags on Friday, July 25th from 5:00 – 8:00pm.
  • Expo Day – Friendly faces are needed to hand out packets, t-shirts, and goody bags on Saturday, July 26th from 9:00am –5:00pm. Various shifts are available.
  • Directional Posts – Direct racers throughout the race route. Loud, lively people required. Motivating and encouraging racers throughout their race is a vital part of the racer experience!
  • Fluid Stations – Distribute water at one of the several fluid stations. Keeping racers hydrated is imperative for a safe race! (This is great for a group of friends to do together!)
  • Youth Race – Assist young racers ages 7-14 who are participating in their very own triathlon!

Additional Volunteer Information:

Training will be provided by the Cleveland Triathlon and UCP staff on Thursday, July 24th from 4:00 – 6:30pm at UCP headquarters (10011 Euclid Avenue).  Additional information will be sent out to all confirmed volunteers closer to the training date.

Corporate groups, networking groups, and youth groups are all welcome to volunteer together. Groupings will be dependent on assignment availability.

If you are interested, please call Emily Hastings at 216-453-4944 or email to sign up to volunteer! Make sure to indicate your volunteer preference and your t-shirt size.

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Closings for the Fourth of July Holiday

UCP of Greater Cleveland Administrative Offices, Vocational Services and Childrens Services facility-based programs will be closed on Friday, July 4th in celebration of the Fourth of July holiday.  Residential Services will be provided as normally scheduled.  Have a safe and fun holiday weekend.

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Team Emily

This week UCP of Greater Cleveland is happy to welcome Emily’s mom, Mary, as our guest blog contributor.  This will be the third year that Team Emily has participated in the Cleveland Triathlon after taking a four year break. We are so happy to have them rejoin Team UCP! 

Team Emily 2009We participated in the Cleveland Triathlon back in 2009 and 2010 because of all the help we received from UCP, so it was our way of giving back. As a mother and a caregiver of a special needs child, it is very complex. When we first went to UCP for therapy, it was amazing how supported I felt. Aside from the awesome therapy services Emily receives, the support the parents receive is also great.

In 2009, my husband, my oldest son and I did a relay, and my younger son volunteered. None of us had ever participated in a triathlon before – we just did this triathlon because UCP was involved. It was so moving to see all the families cross the finish line that my son and I were crying.

The second year the team grew a bit. We told our family they had to come and experience the triathlon. Even if they didn’t want participate in the race, they had to at least see it. That year my oldest son and his girlfriend did a relay together and my younger son did the Sprint distance all by himself. My husband, a family friend and I also did a relay. Both grandparents and some family friends were also there to support Team Emily.

Team Emily 2010Emily crossed the finish line both years with us. The first year my son pushed her across the finish line in a jogging stroller and the second year she got out and walked across the finish line.

I felt compelled for Team Emily to make their return to Team UCP at the Cleveland Triathlon because Emily has spent quite a bit of time at UCP receiving therapy. I have watched not only the therapists with her, but have seen how the aids interact with the adult clients and everyone who comes through the doors of UCP. I am in awe every time I see it – there is so much grace and love with all the clients.

IMG_0359This year Team Emily’s relay will consist of my husband who will be swimming, my father (who is in his late 70s) who will be biking and my mother-in-law who will be walking. In the past, both grandparents came and watched, but now they decided they wanted to participate. We also might have a community relay team. We hope to have Emily cross the finish line on her adaptive tricycle with her grandma. She just learned how to steer and peddle this year.

We really like the fact that UCP is a nonprofit organization and that they don’t turn anybody away for financial reasons. When we fundraise for UCP of Greater Cleveland, I feel very confident asking for donations knowing that it is going directly towards helping kids like Emily. So far we have sent out about ten donation request letters, and we have already received $1,000 because of what UCP stands for and who they are as an organization.

Team Emily is ready to TRI again this year! We hope to see you there!

If you would like to support Team Emily and UCP of Greater Cleveland, please make a donation on their Cleveland Triathlon fundraising page at

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  • Upcoming Events

       July  2014 »
    Events on July 20, 2014
    • Development Committee Meeting

      Starts: 2:30 pm, July 20, 2014

      Ends: 4:00 pm, July 20, 2014

      Location: UCP of Greater Cleveland

    • Board of Directors Meeting

      Starts: 4:00 pm, July 20, 2014

      Ends: 6:00 pm, July 20, 2014

      Location: UCP of Greater Cleveland

    Events on July 27, 2014
    • Team UCP at the Cleveland Triathlon

      Starts: 5:30 am, July 27, 2014

      Ends: 12:00 pm, July 27, 2014

      Location: Voinovich BIcentennial Park, Cleveland, OH, United States