Who could be a better inspiration to new young girl players than their peers who are already succeeding as county golfers and exhibiting a sense of fun, style and competition in their play?
Twelve members of the Essex County Girls squad have been trained as leaders and mentors to run a project led by the Golf Foundation and supported by England Golf and Active Essex, which promotes the sport to a brand new audience in the region with the help of four of the area’s golf clubs.
The county girls – aged between 12 and 17 – have been encouraged to express themselves and communicate the sociability and style of the game, its health and fun benefits and its competitive edge. Certainly in their recent photo shoot (see pictures) they have shown that golf can be anything but fuddy-duddy, and it is also hoped that this project can serve to break down some of the barriers for new players.
The girls were encouraged to come up with a title and a logo for the project, and thus ‘Girls Golf Rocks’ is the name for the campaign starting this month, which tees off with a big taster session in April at each of the four clubs taking part – Little Channels GC, Crowlands Heath GC, Playgolf Colchester, and The Rayleigh Club. Three county squad girls will be helping out at each club.
Following the taster sessions, in which local schoolchildren will be welcomed by the PGA Professional, there will be a four-week structured coaching programme provided by the clubs (with the county girl players mentoring the newcomers) before a final all-inclusive competition will be held on the Par 3 course at Channels GC in May, where new young players will enjoy playing holes with their mentors, benefiting from their experience and encouragement on the course.
Katie Moggan, Regional Development Officer for the Golf Foundation, said: “The Essex County Girls really do deserve great credit for launching Girls Golf Rocks and it is very much their project. As young, athletic players who love this game, and who exhibit a great sense of fun when playing golf, you really couldn’t find better ambassadors for this sport.
“In terms of breaking down the barriers for new girl golfers, these county players really ‘get it’. They know how to encourage new players and I am sure they will be excellent mentors for young people coming into these clubs.”
The project will be directly linked to the national ‘This Girl Can’ promotional campaign on TV and other media which aims to inspire more women and girls to enjoy exercise.
Katie praised England Golf’s representatives Lauren Spray, Women and Girls Participation Manager for England Golf, Helen Tarttelin, Essex County Development Officer, Louella Hitchcock, County Captain, and Wendy Cook, County Junior Organiser for Essex, for their “brilliant work” in the organisation for a project which, if successful, may well be tried in other regions of the country.
Golf Foundation www.golf-foundation.org
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