The R&A has announced its support of the Greg Norman Foundation. It becomes the fifth initiative headed by an Open Champion, on the fifth continent, to be financially assisted by The R&A.
The Foundation, headed by the two-time Open Champion, endeavours to make professional golf tuition available and affordable for the children of Queensland. Since 1988, it has seen tour winners like Adam Scott and Karrie Webb come through its ranks. It has been awarded an initial grant of £10,000 for 2010.
“As a two-time Open Champion, I am delighted that The R&A have given funding to the Greg Norman Golf Foundation to assist with its programmes for boys and girls throughout Queensland, Australia,” said Norman.
“The Foundation conducts four to six week golf programmes in schools, runs junior tournaments over six, nine and 18 holes, conducts sports expos, runs golf clinics, visits indigenous communities and assists disabled players.
“Thousands of young boys and girls are introduced to the wonderful game of golf each year. I am very appreciative of the assistance given by The R&A, which will allow the Foundation to continue the good work being carried out on a daily basis,” he added.
In addition to the Greg Norman Foundation, Arnold Palmer’s Palmer Cup Match, the Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation and the Paul Lawrie Junior Foundation have all been awarded significant sums to assist with their work in the USA, South Africa and Scotland, respectively. The R&A has also supported Sir Nick Faldo’s Faldo Series programme since its inception in the late 1990s.
The Faldo Series identifies and nurtures the next generation of golfing talent through over 30 tournaments in the UK, Europe, South America, the Middle East and Asia that attract over 5,000 young golfers each year. The programme has already produced several successful Tour players including Rory McIlroy, Melissa Reid, Nick Dougherty and Marc Warren.
Arnold Palmer’s international collegiate match between students representing Europe and the USA, the Palmer Cup, receives financial assistance from The R&A and, in return, the leading male golfer at The R&A’s Foundation Scholars Tournament earns a place on the European team.
The Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation, which The R&A has supported since 2009, was founded with the goal of identifying talented young South Africans from families of limited resources and providing them with educational and golfing opportunities. Charl Schwartzel, currently 2nd in the European Tour’s Race to Dubai, is a graduate.
Closer to the Home of Golf, 1999 Open Champion Paul Lawrie plays an active role in junior golf development in his native north east Scotland through the work of his Foundation, which has benefited almost 11,000 young men and women since 2001. The R&A has provided the Foundation with annual grants since 2005.
“Our golf development activity is funded by revenues generated by The Open Championship, so it is fitting that we support the work of our Past Champions who are eager to give back to the game,” explained Director of Golf Development Duncan Weir. “We’re delighted to be able to provide funding for these programmes which, through the enthusiasm and profile of players like Arnold Palmer, Nick Faldo, Greg Norman, Ernie Els and Paul Lawrie, are making real differences to children’s lives.”
Using funds generated by The Open Championship, The R&A promotes golf development, Rules education and best practice for sustainable golf course management throughout the world. Emphasis is placed on both the encouragement of junior golf and the development of the game in emerging golfing nations. More than £6,000,000 was distributed in 2009.
The R&A www.RandA.org