01 Mar 2024 | Clubs and Facilities | Women and girls | Participation | Industry news | Golf Australia |

Queensland government boost helping Women and Girls participation

by Jimmy Emanuel

Woman giving a young girl a golf lesson.
The Queensland government's Active Women and Girls Program is offering grants to golf clubs to boost participation.

As Women & Girls Month kicks off, multiple Queensland clubs and facilities are already benefitting from a program by the Queensland Government to boost sport and active recreation opportunities for women and girls.

Named the Active Women and Girls Program, the $15 million program has had applications open since late 2023, with those wanting to receive a grant needing to file an application by March 6.

Nudgee, Gailes, Carbrook, Wynnum and Quilpie golf clubs are among those to have successfully applied and received funding to drive women and girls involvement in their clubs.

Offering $7500 to successful applicants, the program is focused on education and training, equipment and/or resources.

“I just think it is a brilliant program to get involved in. Anyone who is in a golf club these days who wants to grow their junior girls, this is perfect for them,” General Manager of Gailes Golf Club Frank McCarthy said.

“We are basically using the money to boost the existing programs. Just anything to do with junior girls, we are trying to grow our junior girls database of players.

“We’ve had quite a bit of success over the last couple of years and we are trying to continue that as best we can and this money will help that program.”

Speaking of the financial injection as playing a crucial role in the long-term game that is development of programs targeting typically underrepresented areas of the community such as women and girls, Scott Wagstaff is hoping to use the program to extend Carbrook Golf Club’s reach.

“To help us improve what we do and make the game a little bit more accessible to girls and women,” the Carbrook General Manager said.

“We do some five-week Get Into Golf programs already, but it will allow us to, one get some better equipment to make the experiences a little bit more enjoyable.

“We also have three schools very close by, so hopefully we can maybe go into those schools and expose some young girls to the game as well.”

Similarly looking to both bolster existing programs and work towards new initiatives, Wynnum Golf Club is highlighting the importance of not just introducing more young girls to the game of golf, but women of all ages and stages of life.

“First of all what we want to do is promote and encourage pathways for women and girls in the area to see and understand what is available at the club for them,” Wynnum General Manager Bernard Wilson said.

“What is available at the club is a thriving group of women who manage their competitive and social golf within the club. We have a strong teaching capacity for both individual lessons and group clinics, Matt King is our Head Professional but at the same time we have some great young PGA of Australia Professionals who are very strong in their teaching.

“Within the club now we are going through a process of asking ourselves, what more can we offer? Is it the game in a shorter format? Is it the game in an afternoon? Is it combining clinics with three or four holes of golf?”

Perfectly aligning with the Australian Golf Strategy’s goal to attract new golfers, especially women and girls, the Active Women and Girls Program has drawn high praise from these clubs who know the value of a diverse user group and the needed areas for growth in golf.

“It enables us to dive deep into a particular area and make sure we come out the other side with clear programs and pathways,” Wilson said.

Adds Wagstaff: “It is so good for your club when you’ve got heaps of women and girls frequenting the place. It’s really nice, for clubs like us, we want to create a really healthy family environment, and that means we need kids playing, we need heaps more women in our golf clubs and that will create a much better place for us.”

With the deadline for applications nearing, with the program ending in June 2025, the already successful applicants have some simple advice.

“The Active Women and Girls grant program is a very readily accessible program. I would say to clubs, without delay get in there and register your interest and good luck to you,” Wilson said.

Details on the program and applications can be made here: https://www.qld.gov.au/recreation/sports/funding/active-women-girls-program

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