LPGA*USGA Girls Golf Impacts One Million Girls Worldwide, Launches Campaign to Reach the Next Million by 2030
DAYTONA BEACH, Fl., (July 31, 2023) – The LPGA*USGA Girls Golf program has achieved a remarkable milestone, impacting one million girls through golf across its 550 sites worldwide. To celebrate this achievement, the program is launching its most ambitious fundraising campaign with the goal of reaching the next one million girls by 2030.
The LPGA Foundation has committed to raising $13 million over the next seven years to reduce the financial barriers to golf and accelerate the program’s growth. The engagement effort is focused on three areas: expanding golf access and opportunity, enhancing program experience and increasing grant and scholarship support.
Funds raised by the One Million MORE Girls campaign will directly support bringing new golf sites to communities with little access, while deepening the impact of existing sites around the world. Investments will enhance curriculum, refresh golf supplies, and provide resources to girls with financial needs.
“Through the LPGA*USGA Girls Golf program, we have witnessed the transformative power and lasting impact of golf for women and girls,” said LPGA Commissioner Mollie Marcoux Samaan. “To date, 30% of our participants require financial support to have the equipment and access needed to play the game. By creating more opportunities, breaking down barriers and fostering inclusivity, we can pave the way for a future where the next one million girls can confidently step onto tee boxes anywhere in the world, unlocking the invaluable life skills, opportunities, connections and health benefits that accompany this wonderful game.”
LPGA*USGA Girls Golf was founded in 1989 by Sandy LaBauve, a passionate LPGA Teaching Professional who wanted her daughter Lindy to learn to play golf with other girls. Girls Golf is the only national program of its kind that specializes in providing girl-friendly environments for juniors ages 6-17 to learn to play golf, while also building important life skills like self-esteem, confidence, and perseverance.
Thanks to the support of committed partners like the USGA, who have invested greatly in the program, Girls Golf has grown considerably over the years making a huge impact in communities and helping to change the face of golf.
According to the 2023 NGF Female Participation Study, golf has never had higher female representation than today. Girls under 18 are currently the fastest growing segment of the golfing population. In 1986, girls made up only 14% of all junior golfers, but today, they represent 38% of junior golfers. Also, 20 years ago, one in 17 female junior golfers were non-Caucasian, but today, thanks to programs like Girls Golf, 28% of the junior participants are girls of color.
“I remember sitting with Nancy Henderson and the LPGA Foundation team back in 2011, and discussing how we could get to 100,000 girls. The fact that they’ve reached 1 million participants about a decade later is truly amazing,” said Mike Whan, CEO of the USGA. “Most importantly, these stats show up in actual participation, as the percentage of girls represented in junior golf has literally never been higher. I’m so proud of this team and this achievement – and I can’t wait to be a part of what’s next.”
Many other organizations have already stepped up to help the LPGA Foundation reach its goals. The Pebble Beach Company Foundation recently donated $1.5 million to LPGA*USGA Girls Golf, the single largest gift to the LPGA Foundation in one year. The donation was powered by two unique events that Pebble Beach hosted in conjunction with the 2023 U.S. Women’s Open – Friends of Pebble Beach and All In at The Hay, where 10 Girls Golf members were invited to play in the exclusive event alongside past U.S. Women’s Open Champions and other special guests. Individual donors and event partners including AT&T, Charles Schwab, Chevron, Cisco, Coca-Cola, Lexus, Morgan Stanley, Rolex, Santander, USGA and Walmart helped make this donation possible.
“The U.S. Women’s Open was a momentous week for many reasons, not the least of which was the opportunity to come together with our friends and partners to ensure the next generation of women’s golfers can dream bigger than ever,” said David Stivers, CEO of Pebble Beach Company. “It’s an honor and a privilege to support the LPGA*USGA Girls Golf One Million MORE campaign."
Through the power of golf, the LPGA Foundation seeks support to empower and inspire #OneMillionMORE girls. Together, our investments for the future can make impact in the lives of girls and young women on and off the golf course. Visit www.girlsgolf.org/give to support.