Through the “Drive On For The Future” campaign, The LPGA Foundation continues to champion opportunities for young girls and women who love golf.
The LPGA has made big strides in getting young girls to join the game. This is seen through the growth and impact of LPGA*USGA Girls Golf [link to www.girlsgolf.org]. Run in partnership by The LPGA Foundation and the United States Golf Association, LPGA*USGA Girls Golf (Girls Golf) is a non-profit 501-c3 junior golf program with sites in more than 500 communities across the country. Girls Golf sites provide girls with quality golf instruction led by LPGA and PGA teaching professionals who provide a supportive girl-friendly environment to learn and enjoy the game. Girls Golf reaches more than 80,000 young women annually through traditional junior golf programs and outreach efforts, empowering them with confidence and valuable life skills (including leadership and healthy living) through the Five E's of Girls Golf.
The impact of LPGA*USGA Girls Golf can be seen through members like Sara Matos. When her cousin with whom she was close passed away, Matos found LPGA*USGA Girls Golf of Miami and gained a new perspective on life. She credits Girls Golf for bringing her family, friends, well-needed joy, and inspiration through her coach Stephanie Peareth.
“In Hurricane Irma I lost my home, and I’m so thankful that I have a coach like Stephanie Peareth that can help me with golf, life, school, and everything,” said Matos. “My life is very difficult. I haven’t had the best time… Stephanie and golf has changed my life and that’s what helps me to Drive On.”
This year marks the 30th year that LPGA*USGA Girls Golf has been in existence. The growth in the last 8 years has been phenomenal as it has developed from a “relatively small” program of 5,000 girls to a large entity on its way to serving over 90,000 in 2019. There is now a lofty yet achievable goal of engaging 100,000 girls with the program by the end of 2020.
Still, only 36% of all junior golfers are female. The LPGA Foundation aims to get this number to 50% with the $50 for 50% "Drive On For the Future" campaign. The campaign will provide funds for increasing operating expenses and establishing a solid financial base for the future. Additionally, for every $1,000 raised by Girls Golf Site Directors, 50% will be donated back to their site.
“I Drive On because I think about my future and how much I can be in the golf world and LPGA, and I just think about how much I’ve come through and what I’ve become within these past years I’ve been playing golf and I believe that once I grow up, I can be a great golfer and I can make everything so much better,” said Matos.
“I can make girls follow me in my footsteps in the Girls Golf future because honestly Girls Golf and the LPGA have really changed my life in every prospect I have had.”
How can you help Drive On for the Future?
- Text Drive to 71777 or visit https://bitly.com/LPGADrive to make your gift
- Sign up to become a fundraiser and share your personal page with your friends and family via text, email, or social media
- Join the conversation on social media by sharing your own #DriveOn story and encouraging others to Drive On for the Future. Click HERE for a social toolkit.