Ambitious plan to get more girls playing golf
PLAYERS at one of Ipswich’s most exclusive golf clubs will soon witness a new generation of female talent coming through the ranks.
A new scholarship program, aimed at encouraging young girls to get involved with the sport, is taking place at Brookwater Golf Club.
St Augustine‘s College student Hope Emerson, 11, is among the local girls taking part in the program under the watchful eye of southeast Queensland pro-golfer John Collins.
“We selected five girls from the school who have shown a passion for golf and were eager to develop their skills through training and playing more golf,” Mr Collins said.
“Due to our successful MyGolf Junior Development Program and the involvement we have had with many girls joining the various programs over the past seven years, I was chosen as one of 25 MyGolf facilities in Australia, to conduct The Australian Golf Foundation Junior Girls Golf Scholarship program.”
Ms Emerson had once practised the sport about three years ago before giving it up.
Her father John Emerson said his daughter was thrilled to be playing golf again – a hobby they once shared – in the new female-only class.
“Hope started hitting golf balls at the age of three, when she would come to the range with me,” he said.
“She loves the practice sessions set up by John Collins and also the social aspect of learning the game with other girls her age.
“She was introduced to golf initially as all her family members play the game, but it was the female-only classes which attracted her back to the game.“
The free program is designed for girls aged between 10-16 who are either experienced players or newcomers.
Mr Collins said the program would run throughout the year during each school term.
“We have training sessions each Monday morning from 7-8am and the girls can practice and play as much as they would like outside of the training sessions – they have all been given a junior membership at Brookwater Golf & Country Club as part of the scholarship,” he said.
He said golf provided many benefits for participants.
“Not every woman needs to take up golf to become the best player,” Mr Collins said.
“Many are learning the game for the social aspect and also the challenge that golf provides to the individual as you compete against yourself to get that little bit better each and every time you play or practice.
“It is unique in that it is the one sport that many generations can all go out and play together, learn together and even compete against one another.”
He said he hoped the program inspired more females to take up the sport.
“The benefits of golf can also be found in the business world with many corporate clients interacting during a game of golf and often the relaxed atmosphere on a golf course can lend itself to forming future business relationships,” he said.
The club is set to host a Learn, Hit and Sip event in June as another way to introduce females to golf.
To register call 07 3814 5500.
Read more stories by Kaitlyn Smith here.