Golf in schools is no longer a dream, but a reality
The training for the secondary schools Golf pilot programme got off to a wonderful start, with PE teachers from Berbice, Linden, Georgetown, East Coast Demerara and Essequibo all participating in a group training at the Nexgen Golf Academy on Woolford Avenue.
The four-hour session was attended by 14 participants, and Head of the Allied Arts Unit in the Ministry of Education, Ms. Barker-King, was on hand to welcome them along with Department Head Nicholas Fraser and Programme Coordinator Al Junior Wilson.
Speaking to the group of teachers, Ms. Barker-King encouraged them to embrace their mandate as leaders of an incredible programme that would be the beacon for future generations.
“You have a responsibility to yourselves and our learners all across the country, and you’ve been chosen to lead a programme that will impact the lives of our children forever. We are grateful to Mr. Hussain and the Guyana Golf Association, along with the Nexgen Golf Academy for their support in making the dream of playing Golf a reality for thousands of children.”
Mr. Fraser said he was pleased with the results so far, and is excited about the prospects of seeing golf take a top position in the schools due to its unique COVID-compliant qualities.
“As educators, sports activities are very important, and we are glad that the partnership with Aleem can provide an alternative to contact sports during this unprecedented period in our history,” he said.
Reaction from the teachers was extremely positive, and the competitive nature was quickly evident as they spent over four hours learning and competing among themselves.
The immediate goal of this initiative is to build a team in all the pilot schools to engage in a chip and putt competition in six weeks’ time.
As seen from the energetic nature of the President of the Guyana Golf Association, the plan to bring Golf to the forefront of all sports is quickly becoming a reality, as more and more persons are getting involved in the game.
Hussain has often emphasised that the only reasons golf isn’t Number 1 in Guyana are because of accessibility and affordability, two things that he is working to change as soon as possible.
“We are focused on creating facilities in as many regions as possible, and providing equipment and balls so that everyone can have a chance to try the sport. A major part of the strategy was put in place when the programme was approved by the CEO and Deputy CEO of the Secondary Schools after prompting by Ms. Barker-King and Mr. Fraser,” he said.
“With access to over 100,000 children in the school system, the Golf Association and Allied Arts Unit feel it is viable to have at least 5% of them take up the sport, and expect that one parent will also be enticed into participating, thereby creating at least 7,000-10,000 new players in less than two years! It is important to note that no other sport has ever experienced such growth” said Ms. Barker-King, explaining that she was happy that such an opportunity was at their disposal though the efforts of Mr. Hussain.
Through partnerships with the Scouts Association of Guyana and the Guyana Teachers Union, Nexgen Global has been able to establish a fully lighted driving range and Academy in Georgetown, and now can offer training to approximately 14,000 teachers as a part of that affiliation.
The cost of learning the game for kids is as low as $500/hour and the facility is open daily until 8pm. You can join the more than 500 new players having fun and learning the game by calling 645-0944 or visiting the Nexgen Golf Academy Facebook page.