15 Jun 2023 | Participation | Clubs and Facilities | Golf Australia |

New audience for Get Into Golf

by Australian Golf Media

Get Into Golf a big hit with African group

Get Into Golf is a huge hit in Geelong amongst an eager group of young adults of African descent.

The group of 11 are participants in youth programs at The fOrT Youth Centre in Geelong, a regional facility that provides free programs and a safe space for young people to socialise and engage with others in the community.

The idea for the golf program began with a conversation between Jake Cole-Sinclair, the Golf Australia Relationship Officer, Nat Nolan, program coordinator at Leisure Networks, and the City of Greater Geelong’s Youth Engagement and Connections team.

They approached the Curlewis Golf Club and PGA Professional Jarryd Collis to establish the program’s schedule which consisted of two sessions held at The Range Curlewis during the April school holidays period, as well as two follow-up sessions on Wednesday evenings.

In addition to teaching the new golfers the basic skills of the game and allowing them to get out on the driving range and mini golf course, it was the social aspect that proved the winner.

Titit Nyak, the Youth Engagement Social Inclusion Officer from the City of Greater Geelong, was delighted to witness the enthusiastic interactions among all the participants and their willingness to embrace something new and unfamiliar.

Titit observed how quickly the rookie group was able to learn the basic skills of golf with the smiles and laughter from them all a great measure of success.

Prior to joining the program, most attendees had limited thoughts about golf, with mini golf being their primary association with the sport.

However, after just a few sessions, there was a significant shift in their perceptions, noted Golf Australia Relationship Officer Jake Cole-Sinclair.

“Initially no-one in the group had thoughts about playing the game, but after building the skills through the first two sessions there was an eagerness from the group to continue to learn,” Jake said.

“It is likely that other individuals who haven’t engaged with golf may hold similar preconceived perceptions. To overcome this, the sport is committed to looking at more ways to modify and expand our entry points, determined at creating safe and welcoming spaces for anyone to visit.

“The objective of this program was to offer an enjoyable golf program to the group while also eliminating barriers to participation. Creating opportunities for underrepresented groups within the sport is a must for growth.

“We applaud Curlewis Golf Club for grabbing this opportunity with both hands and we’re keen to see more of these programs happening around the country.

“Too often these very important opportunities slip through the cracks and never go past an initial thought.

“Getting this program running is something everyone should be very proud of.

“Touching base with the Youth Engagement and Connections team at the City of Greater Geelong, or the equivalent in your local area, is a great first step to find out what activities and programs are available for young people.”

If you want more information about this story or to get in touch with your local Golf Australia representative, email golfparticipation@golf.org.au

Whether you are familiar with the sport or just a first-timer, Get Into Golf is ready to show you the ropes. Get Into Golf clinics run Australia-wide, find your nearest one here.

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