The all-new Golf Foundation ‘Junior Golf Passport’ has been launched to retain more youngsters in golf clubs who have been introduced to the game through school and community projects. The new Passport has enjoyed a radical makeover: it is supported by a major new interactive website designed to appeal to youngsters, while offering PGA Professionals a significant coaching and business resource.
After extensive consultation with the Professional Golfers’ Association (PGA) and coaches across the country, the new physical resource and online Junior Golf Passport has been “designed by coaches for coaches” as the official junior learning programme for the England Golf Partnership and Golf Development Wales, and is part of the Foundation’s HSBC Golf Roots programme.
The scheme and website (www.juniorgolfpassport.org) is now live for a first raft of 110 PGA coaches in England and Wales and the local golf projects they represent. This ‘soft launch’ is to allow the coaches to work with the Junior Golf Passport over the summer months before a large-scale official launch in October (PGA Pros can register their interest for this now).
Mike Round, Chief Executive of the Golf Foundation, said: “We are delighted that the Junior Golf Passport is endorsed by the PGA and is set to become the accepted formula for the PGA coach and youngster working together. Volunteers and parents will also play a big part in the delivery of the scheme, creating a great resource that is part of a comprehensive introduction to the game. This can start at school with Tri-Golf and the hope is that children will follow a pathway into learning at the golf club with this scheme helping them to gain that first handicap under expert supervision.”
This vital resource for grass roots junior golf will offer a business opportunity for PGA Professionals and support PGA Pros, coaches and volunteers as they engage with children new to golf. Striking visuals and clear instruction plus a strong interactive element online, have modernized the traditional Junior Golf Passport significantly. There is a particular focus on fundamental movement skills and practical ways for delivering the Golf Foundation’s ‘Skills for Life’ message.
The Junior Golf Passport is part of the Golf Foundation’s HSBC Golf Roots programme that has attained strong success in the school and club networks. The Foundation has taken Tri-Golf and Golf Xtreme golf formats into thousands of schools with the support of the Youth Sport Trust, and the Junior Golf Passport will be a great addition to this work.
The Golf Foundation’s Marketing Manager Sarah Tennyson was the Project Leader for the new Junior Golf Passport. Sarah said: “The aim of the Junior Golf Passport is to introduce more young people and families to golf in a structured and affordable programme that develops playing, physical and personal skills as well as a lifelong connection to golf. The programme offers outstanding value for money to families, while supporting the PGA coach’s business needs is a very important part of this arrangement.”
Jonathan Wright, PGA Coach Education and Development Manager (England), said: “The PGA were very happy to have been invited by the Golf Foundation to be a part of the development of the new Junior Golf Passport. PGA Professionals have been involved throughout the re-development and we hope that the new Passport will help to inspire the next generation of young people to start playing the game, by supporting the development of their Skills for Life, which should encourage them to continue playing golf throughout their lifetime. The PGA therefore fully endorse the new Passport and hope that it is extremely successful.”
The Junior Golf Passport:
Sarah Tennyson added: “By introducing the Junior Golf Passport to a first wave of PGA Professionals and local golf projects, it is allowing us to road-test every element of the website resource to ensure that the scheme can exceed expectations when open to all in October. We completed our training for our Regional Development Officers last week and they are now talking it through with their PGA Professionals. We have been really delighted with the response from all the Professionals involved so far. It is early days but we feel the Junior Golf Passport will be a landmark in golf learning for youngsters.”
PGA Professionals who would like to register their interest in being part of the new Junior Golf Passport can contact the Golf Foundation on 01992 449830, or see www.golf-foundation.org