The First Tee Wraps Up Phase III (2006-2010) Having Reached
More Than 4.7 Million Young People
St. Augustine, Fla. (February 2, 2011) - Since 1997, The First Tee has been teaching young people valuable life skills that build character using golf as a platform. At the conclusion of its third phase of activity, from 2006-2010, more than 4.7 million young people in total have been reached through its programs.
"The First Tee network has grown tremendously over the years and I offer gratitude and encouragement to all involved in the organization's work," said Joe Louis Barrow, Jr., chief executive since 2000. "We have come far, yet remain steadfast in our mission to impact the lives of young people through educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices through the game of golf."
The organization reached several milestones in its third phase of activity, including:
- Certification of more than 530,000 young people at various levels of The First Tee Life Skills Experience™, the educational platform delivered at chapters.
- Expansion of The First Tee National School Program to more than 4,000 elementary schools representing 500 school districts.
- Operation of chapters in 88 of the top 100 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) in the U.S.
- Roll out of the PLAYer curriculum that introduces young participants to the golf course early and addresses retention and progression in the program.
- Establishment of benchmarks that measure quality and consistent operational standards at chapters. At the end of 2010, 96% of The First Tee chapters are effectively meeting standards.
- Concluded of a four-year, independent research study that evaluated and ultimately substantiated The First Tee's Life Skills Experience as an educational platform that leads to positive character behaviors in participants.
- Provided more than 1,000 participants of The First Tee opportunities to further their life skills, leadership and golf abilities through national academies, camps, golf tournaments and other events, and designated 250 The First Tee Scholars, resulting in 90 college scholarships.
- Helped grow the game of golf by building confidence in young people's ability to play. (Half of all The First Tee participants reported "high confidence" in their golfing ability, which is proven to have an effect on one's decision to stay involved in the sport.)
- Developed chapters in six international locations: Canada (Montreal and Greater Vancouver), England (Manchester), Ireland, New Zealand (Auckland) and Singapore.
The First Tee's next five year strategic plan will be launched at The First Tee Network Meeting Feb. 17-19 in San Antonio, Texas, where more than 500 chapter executive directors, program directors and volunteer board members will gather.
Barrow continued, "Over the next five years, The First Tee will focus on building capacity through the framework currently in place and developing new relationships to broaden our outreach potential."
The First Tee's programs are currently offered at golf facilities, in elementary schools and on U.S. military installations around the world.
From 2006-2010 (Phase III), The First Tee focused on expansion with the intention to deliver the program in places where young people were most apt to be. The First Tee National School Program rolled out in 2004, bringing basic golf skill lessons along with The First Tee Nine Core Values™ into physical education classes at elementary schools. A third delivery channel emerged as The First Tee extended programming to the dependents of U.S. military personnel.
For more information about The First Tee, visit www.thefirsttee.org.
About The First Tee
The First Tee (www.thefirsttee.org), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit youth development organization whose mission is to impact the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices through the game of golf. With its home office at World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Fla., The First Tee reaches young people on golf courses, in schools and on military installations.
Since its inception in 1997, The First Tee has introduced the game of golf and its values to more than 4.7 million participants in all 50 United States and four international locations. The First Tee is an initiative of the World Golf Foundation and its Founding Partners are LPGA, the Masters Tournament, PGA of America, PGA TOUR and the USGA. Former President George H. W. Bush serves as honorary chairman.
As Founding Corporate Partner of The First Tee, Shell Oil Company has provided financial resources to support the development of this charitable youth initiative aimed at promoting character development and life-enhancing values through the game of golf. Shell's initial contribution has led the way for other individuals, corporations and organizations to provide ongoing financial and promotional support to The First Tee and its chapters.