Joy for Broadlees Golf Club & Chapelton Primary School after winning the Critchley Award at The Golf Foundation Presidents’ Awards.
This eight-week partnership fostered ‘community spirit’ through golf and educated young people about a range of subjects. All 44 pupils from Chapelton school visited Broadlees GC each week, taking part in golf activity but also learning about: renewable energy in relation to nearby wind turbines; planting 80 trees at the golf course; farming diversification; building bird boxes and designing a golf hole.
The pupils had reports published in the local paper, contributed to a new community noticeboard at the club and attended a Mini Medics first aid course run by the club staff. Twenty-nine of the pupils progressed to after-school coaching at Broadlees GC and a number are now academy members. The project has also positively changed how both the pupils and parents perceive golf.
The Golf Foundation Presidents’ Awards at Wentworth on Wednesday (23rd of May) celebrated the “fantastic people at the heart of junior golf” – the volunteers and professionals who selflessly give their time to help young people to enjoy the benefits of golf.
Thanks to support from the European Tour, the ceremony was held again this year in Wentworth Club’s elegant Ballroom, where the event’s largest ever audience heard the stories of 10 award winners and their projects – some of whom have been through positive but highly emotional journeys thanks to golf.
The Golf Foundation is the nationally recognised charity that works with national partners to encourage young people to ‘Start, Learn and Stay’ in the sport. Its HSBC Golf Roots programme reaches 500,000 youngsters a year, creating a pathway from discovering golf in schools and the community to playing regular golf at golf clubs. The charity offers boys and girls the opportunity to enjoy all aspects of the sport with an emphasis on ‘Skills for Life’ learning to support young people as they develop, both on and off the course.
The Presidents’ Awards ceremony was teed up perfectly by Emma Anderson and Ali Jodiyawalla, who are members of the England Young Ambassadors group. Ali and Emma spoke eloquently, while10 ‘Presidents’ Awards’ were presented by the charity’s current President, Sandy Jones. Each award winner was serenaded with an appropriate song by the brilliant Windsor Academy Trust Choir from Halesowen; not only great singers but an academy with a strong golfing pedigree.
Golf Foundation Chairman Stephen Lewis thanked all the charity’s core funders and supporters for backing the charity. He said: “We are hugely grateful to everyone who chooses to support us. Without this help our team wouldn’t be able to make the progress with so many local projects and many of these great award winners wouldn’t be able to express their enthusiasm and passion in helping some of the fantastic young people here today.”
Chief Executive Brendon Pyle talked the audience through the award winners. He added: “We received so many brilliant nominations which shows just how much is being done in golf clubs, schools and communities to encourage youngsters into the game. The people on stage today represent all the fantastic people at the heart of junior golf.”