From the Executive Director: Words Matters

Before I begin the blog this month, I wanted to remind you all to mark your calendars for January 26th during the PGA Merchandise Show.  The National Alliance for Accessible Golf will be conducting its first education conference on accessibility and inclusion. It is a full day from 8:00 to 3:30 with speakers and round table discussions on topics such as ADA Updates, Best Practices for accessible and inclusive golf, connecting with Special Olympics and connecting with individuals in the Autism Spectrum, to mention a few of the topics.   It will be held at the Rosen Centre Hotel next door to the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando and is an easy walk via a sky bridge for those attending the Show.  Registration is open online at www.accessgolf.org.  Click on the Register Now graphic on our homepage.

Now on to my comments for December.  How many times have you heard people refer to an individual with a disability as “a handicapped person”? Or used the “R” word to describe an individual with intellectual disability?  Or refer to someone as a “dwarf or midget”?  These are some of the descriptions we need to change.  A disability description is just a medical diagnosis.  In communications with people, we need to focus on the individual first.  Use phrases such as a “Person with a disability”, a “Person with intellectual disability”, or a “Person short in stature”.  Always put the Person first in your communication.  A Person with a disability is a Person just like those without disability.   They just happen to have a medical diagnosis.  Better yet, just refer to them as a Person!!  A great resource concerning People First Language is: https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/disabilityandhealth/pdf/disabilityposter_photos.pdf 

A final reminder that as we approach the end of the year, and we are all getting prepared to file our tax returns for 2017, we ask that you consider supporting the National Alliance for Accessible Golf in your year-end charitable giving.  We are very reliant on individual donations to promote and advocate for golf to be inclusive, and to provide education/training programs such as on January 26th.  It is easy to make a year-end donation to the National Alliance.  Go to www.accessgolf.org and click on the “DONATE” button on the upper right corner of the homepage.  Thank you in advance for considering the National Alliance for Accessible Golf in your year-end giving.

Steve Jubb, PGA – CEO/Executive Director

 

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From the Executive Director: Looking Forward to 2018

It is hard to believe but another year has almost gone by.  Hope you all have had a great 2017, especially those who are engaged in ensuring that the game of golf is inclusive for everyone especially those with dis/Abilities.  Golf is a game that can be played by everyone.  Some putt on the putting green, some hit shots on the range, some play a couple of holes and some play 9 or 18 holes.  But we all play GOLF!

For the last several years, the United States Golf Association has partnered with the National Alliance for Accessible Golf to help fund grassroots programs that are developing individuals with disabilities into the game of golf through inclusionary programming.  Did you know that funds are available right now for such programming?  Since the inception of the USGA/Alliance partnership, grants totaling more than $800,000 have been awarded to program impacting more than 14,000 individuals by engaging them in our sport.  Check out our website at www.accessgolf.org under “Grants” for a list of programs that have been supported as well as the grant criteria and application.  If you are doing grassroots programming that meets the criteria, don’t pass up this funding opportunity. Dollars are waiting for your application.

Mark your calendars for January 26th during the PGA Merchandise Show.  The National Alliance for Accessible Golf will be conducting its first education conference on accessibility and inclusion. It is a full day of speakers and round table discussions on topics such as ADA Updates, Best Practices for accessible and inclusive golf, connecting with Special Olympics and connecting with individuals in the Autism Spectrum to mention a few of the topics.   It will be held at the Rosen Centre Hotel next door to the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando and is an easy walk via a sky bridge for those attending the Show.  Registration is scheduled to be online at www.accessgolf.org by mid-November.

As 2017 is almost over, we are all preparing to file our tax returns for 2017.  We ask that you consider supporting the National Alliance for Accessible Golf in your year-end charitable giving.  On November 28th, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, “Giving Tuesday” is being held nationwide to have individuals donate to various non-profits/charities to support those organizations’ missions.  While we do get support from the various golf associations, we are very reliant on individual donations as well to provide the grants, promotions/advocacy for golf to be inclusive, and education/training programs.  So, consider making a year-end donation to the National Alliance by going to www.accessgolf.org and click on the “DONATE” button on the upper right corner of the homepage.  Thank you in advance for considering to support the National Alliance.

Everyone have a safe and grateful Thanksgiving.  See you next month!

Steve Jubb, PGA – CEO/Executive Director

From the Executive Director: Fighting the Good Fight

Wow.  It is October already.  Many of you are wrapping up your summer programs and for some of you the golf season is coming to a close.  We hope it has been a great year for you, whether you run a facility, a program or are involved in a program that ensures accessibility and inclusion.

Over the course of the last several years, I have seen many organizations form to serve individuals with dis/Abilities.  Many are out there fighting the good fight for inclusion and accessibility.  And some have left this arena.  In the end, they all have a place in the universal effort to ensure that individuals with dis/Abilities have access to our game and to life.  They all have a niche and I applaud each of them for their efforts.

One of the terms I have noticed used by some of these organizations and programs is “Adaptive Golf.”  Well, stepping back and looking at it, we all are just teaching and engaging individuals in “Golf” and at the same time “Life.”  We may use adaptive equipment.  We may adapt our instruction plans to accommodate the abilities of the individual.  We may adapt the traditional round of golf (9 or 18) and engage individuals at whatever level of the game they can.  They may just putt on the putting green.  They may just hit balls of the range.  They may play 1 hole, 3 holes or whatever.  But in the end, they are all engaged with our sport – Golf!  So, if you are a golf course operator or professional, course owner, management company, program coordinator, or therapist, see how you can connect with the 57 million individuals and if you can get them involved with golf.  Not only will they experience a game and all it offers, but think of the social and psychological benefits of getting out of the house or rehab facility, out into the fresh air and green grass.

And if you are expanding or starting a program, consider visiting our website at www.accessgolf.org and click on “Grants.”  Funding is available for accessible and inclusive programming.

Until next month, “Choose to Include.”

Steve Jubb, PGA – CEO/Executive Director

National Alliance for Accessible Golf

From the Executive Director: Save the Date

Hello to everyone.  I must apologize for being tardy in getting uploaded this monthly blog for September.  Just a few things going on in South Florida like Hurricane Irma and the aftermath.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone impacted by Hurricane Irma as well as Hurricane Harvey.  Pray that this is the end of the hurricanes this year.  Enough is enough!

This month I want to make everyone aware that the National Alliance for Accessible Golf will be conducting an education conference during the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, FL on January 26th.  The conference will be conducted at the Rosen Centre Hotel next to the Orange County Convention Center.  Panel topics include everything from What Does Inclusion Really Mean to ADA to Adaptive Equipment to Program Development and Sustainability.  While details are being finalized, keep an eye out for more information and registration shortly on www.accessgolf.org.  We hope to see many of you there.
Grants Available Fall 2016

As we approach the Fall of 2017, I wanted to also let you know that the National Alliance for Accessible Golf has grants available through funding from the United States Golf Association.  Many of you out there either conduct Accessible/Inclusive Golf Programs or you might be a participant in a program.  If you have a program or know of a program that focuses on accessibility and inclusion of individuals with disabilities in golf, then check out our website at www.accessgolf.org under “Program Funding.”

See you next month.  In the meantime, “Choose to Include.”

Steve Jubb, PGA – CEO/Executive Director

From the Executive Director: Diversity and Inclusion Are More Than Buzz Words

Diversity and Inclusion are popular buzzwords in the golf industry these days. Often times, it is to refer to gender or ethnic diversity and inclusion in society and even the game of golf.

However, Diversity and Inclusion also needs to include individuals with disabilities.  Often overlooked in these discussions, whether in society or golf, what we find is these individuals like everyone else have abilities.  There are great efforts around the country like PGA HOPE, Special Olympics, National Amputee Golf Association along with the Eastern Amputee Golf Association, Els for Autism to mention just a few.  Each strive to work towards inclusion in the game and in life.

However, some golf courses still balk at accommodating individuals with disabilities.  Aside from Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) and the potential litigation that could come from denying access to individuals with disabilities to the game, if we truly want to create a society of inclusion, then why not reach out into your community and see how you can bring someone new to the game, someone such as those with a disability?

As we mentioned last month and before, the National Alliance for Accessible Golf has toolkits for golf courses and individuals with disabilities, best practices, and a program/facility search engine.

DYK - Search Engine

Further, our search engine connects individuals with disabilities with local programs and golf facilities. If you have an inclusive program in your community or at your golf facility, go to our homepage at www.accessgolf.org and scroll down and click on the link to enter the program information.

Finally, if your organization is looking for a speaker or presenter concerning the subject of inclusion of individuals with disabilities into the game of golf, contact us at info@accessgolf.org and we will work with you to locate a speaker for your event, meeting, etc.

Together we can all make this game inclusive and accessible.

Until next month,

Steve Jubb, PGA, Executive Director

Executive Director: Together We Can

WOW!  Half the year is already gone by and most of us are in the middle of summer and our programming to ensure that individuals with disabilities have access to the game of golf and life.  Hope it is going well for you all.

The National Alliance for Accessible Golf has had a busy year thus far.  Meetings at both the PGA Merchandise Show and the Golf Industry Show.  National Golf Day on Capitol Hill in DC in April followed by our annual Board of Directors meeting in Alexandria, VA.  Presentation by Jan Bel Jan of our Board at the American Society of Golf Course Architects in May.  Then that was followed up by our presence at the 2017 Special Olympics North America Golf Championship in Seattle.  And now here in the first week of July, meetings and exhibit at the Department of Defense Warrior Games and the Warrior Summit Transitional Resource Fair for Veterans and Families in Chicago.  All this along with the various grants we have distributed to grassroots programs for accessible and inclusive programming.  And still we have another half of the year to go.

DYK - Alliance General

July is National Alliance for Accessible Golf Awareness month.  Check out our website for resources, search engine, articles, best practices, etc.

Together we can all make this game inclusive and accessible.

DDk3vPCUIAAwx5-P.S. I had a big surprise at the Special Olympics event in Seattle.  During Opening Ceremonies, on behalf of Special Olympics and PGA of America, Beth Major of the USGA and Board member of the National Alliance for Accessible Golf presented me with the Conrad Rehling Award for efforts over the years with Special Olympics and individuals with disabilities.  Very emotional moment for me.

Steve Jubb, PGA – CEO/Executive Director

 

From the Executive Director: Stay Safe On the Course This Summer

iGood morning (at least it is morning where I am).  We are moving into summer here in Florida.  It is hot.  Which reminds me that everyone out on the golf course this summer needs to make sure they are hydrated.  Speaking from experience, you do not want to have heat stroke.  Also at the same time, make sure you wear sunblock.  Skin cancer is nothing to fool around with.  I visit my dermatologist at least twice a year.

In May, the National Alliance attended the American Society of Golf Course Architects Annual Conference in Jupiter, Florida.  Jan Bel Jan, National Alliance Executive Committee member and member of the Executive Committee of the ASGCA, presented on Accessibility in Design.  Well done, Jan.  Very informative session.  We are working on uploading the PowerPoint to our Resource tab on www.accessgolf.org.

Also in May at our monthly Board of Directors conference call, we had the privilege of Kevin Corn join us and share with us his program in conjunction with Ranken Jordan Pediatric Hospital in Missouri.  The work that Kevin and the hospital are doing, using the game of golf for rehab and smiles for the children who are patients, is improving lives through the game.  Check out the following videos about the program, or visit the blog at http://rankenjordangolf.blogspot.com:

“May Reynoso – Ranken Jordan Golf Program”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nopYTCy4WGE

“Cooper Burks – Ranken Jordan Golf”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pg-aywNC2SE

Last month, I focused this blog on some of the resources that the National Alliance for Accessible has for individuals with disabilities and access to our sport, golf.  Hope you all had a chance to visit our website and check out the resources we have there.  If not, go to www.accessgolf.org and see what is available.

Whether you are an individual or an organization, you can help make this game of golf more inclusive.  And in the end, that is what golf should be – a game for everyone!!

Steve Jubb, PGA – Executive Director

 

From the Executive Director: National Golf Day

NGD

On April 26, the National Alliance for Accessible Golf had the pleasure of participating in this year’s National Golf Day on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.  The National Alliance was part of a golf presentation in the Rayburn House Office Building Foyer along with Links to Freedom Golf Foundation and Salute Military Golf Association.  We had good traffic through the foyer from Congress Members along with Congressional Staff and others that were visiting the Capitol.  While that was going on all day, there were various meetings with Members of Congress on issues affecting golf.  Mike Tinkey, President of the National Alliance for Accessible Golf, represented us well along with the other members of our Board of Directors who were in attendance.  Unfortunately, we were not able to conduct a golf demo/clinic on The Mall in DC the day before for the public due to weather and logistical issues.  However, the Golf Industry did a beautification project on The Mall which was well received by the public along with the Park Service.

Moving on, in May the National Alliance will be represented at the American Society of Golf Course Architects annual conference in Jupiter, Florida.  Jan Bel Jan, National Alliance Executive Committee member and member of the Executive Committee of the ASGCA, will be presenting on Accessibility in Design.  I will also be in attendance as well.

This month I would like to focus this blog on some of the resources that the National Alliance for Accessible has for individuals with disabilities and access to our sport, golf.

First of all, if you go to our website at www.accessgolf.org and click on Resources, you will find a number of links and contacts to help with engaging in golf.  We have 2 toolkits:  one for golf course operators and one for individuals with disabilities.  There are also other links for other organizations serving individuals with disabilities through golf.

On our home page of www.accessgolf.org, you will also find a search engine that can help locate organizations and facilities around the country that have accessible golf programs.  We are still seeking additional information from other programs and facilities out there to constantly build up that database.  If you know of a program in your community, encourage them to go to our homepage and click on the link to add their program information.

Resources are out there to help make this game of golf more inclusive.  And in the end, that is what golf should be – a game for everyone!!

Steve Jubb, PGA – Executive Director

 

From the Executive Director: Working Together

You have seen me promote in this blog many times over the last few years the USGA/National Alliance for Accessible Golf Grant Program.  The National Alliance and the United States Golf Association (USGA) believe that golf should be open to everyone and supports a wide variety of programs that create opportunities for individuals with disabilities to participate in the sport. The Alliance and the USGA formed a grant-making partnership back in 2010 to advance opportunities for individuals with disabilities through the game of golf.  This partnership is a component of the USGA’s initiatives which have contributed more than $5 million since 1997 as well as promotion of programs that serve individuals with disabilities. Most recently, the USGA announced that they will be developing events at a national level for individuals with disabilities.  While that initiative is in the early stages, this along with the proliferation of programs around the country making golf accessible is a great sign that golf is moving towards inclusion.

The USGA/National Alliance for Accessible Golf Grant Program supports organizations which provide opportunities for individuals with disabilities to learn and enjoy the game of golf and its inherent values. The Alliance and the USGA share the belief that the game of golf is exceptionally well-suited to allow individuals with disabilities to participate in a recreational or competitive activity with participants who have various types of disabilities as well as those who do not have disabilities. We encourage inclusive programming – opportunities that allow participants with disabilities and participants without disabilities to learn and play the game side by side.

The Alliance Grants Committee believes that the values of the game are best learned by playing the game. As such, the Alliance places great emphasis on providing opportunities for participants to experience golf to the fullest extent possible. Programs should offer affordable and accessible opportunities for participants to experience golf both during scheduled programming and after programming is concluded.

Funds are available so if you have a program that meets the criteria for the grants, apply today.  Go to www.accessgolf.org and click on Program Funding.

On another note, the National Alliance for Accessible Golf will be participating in this year’s National Golf Day on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on April 26th.  The morning before on April 25th in cooperation with the Middle Atlantic Section, PGA, there will be a golf demo/clinic on The Mall in DC between 3rd Street and 4th Street near Madison Avenue.  In addition, participants in National Golf Day will be doing a beautification project on The Mall in the same area.   If you are in the area, stop by and say hello.

Steve Jubb, PGA – Executive Director

From the Executive Director: Saving Lives

Springtime is approaching for most of the country.  Yes, there will be the occasional snow storm or bad weather in the meantime but we know that good weather is around the corner.  All this means that programs for individuals with dis/Abilities will be starting up soon.  As we have mentioned before, if you have a grassroots program that develops individuals with dis/Abilities into the game of golf, check out our website at www.accessgolf.org for resources as well as an application for the USGA/Alliance Grant Program. You will find grant information under “Program Funding” tab.

On February 21st, the National Alliance for Accessible Golf conducted a monthly conference call with our Board of Directors and our Advisory Board.  Aside from our usual business agenda, we were blessed to have Renee Powell, PGA/LPGA Professional and Founder of Clearview HOPE, join the call and share the impact that golf has had on her program participants.  The focus of Clearview HOPE is Women Veterans who have served our country in the military.  Although golf is used as a central core to the program, there is a great deal of focus on the social, interpersonal relations of program participants and providing a support vehicle for the Women Veterans.  I have heard it said many times by the Veteran participants in the various PGA HOPE programs and other programs across the country that the program “saved their life.”  The suicide rate of Veterans is more than 20 a day.  That is 21 percent higher than civilian adults.  Engaging the Veterans in a program like Clearview HOPE can help save lives.  Below is a link about Clearview HOPE that speaks volumes about the program at Clearview Golf Course in East Canton, Ohio.  Hope you take time to view it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWa1Z0K9GxI&sns=em

If you need information about starting a program or just information about accessibility and inclusion, feel free to contact us at info@accessgolf.org or check out our website at www.accessgolf.org.

As we continue our journey into 2017, let’s all strive to ensure that the game of golf is truly “Inclusive” and see how we might expand or start a program that helps save lives.

Steve Jubb, PGA – Executive Director