Kenya Golf Guide

Safaricom CEO, Peter Ndegwa (left) holds a book as Belinda Wanjiru (center) signs an autograph during the Junior Golf Foundation partnership launch with Safaricom, NCBA, Crown Paints and Prime Bank.

By Daniella Apiyo and Amanda Damaris 

Junior Golf Foundation’s (JGF) ambition to nurture and grow the game has received a major boost after signing partnerships with Safaricom, NCBA, Crown Paints and Prime Bank.

The 3-year renewable agreements will cater for the training of coaches, local golf tours and nationwide golf development.

“We are quite fortunate to have brought on board 4 big corporates in Safaricom, NCBA, Crown Paints and Prime Bank as our main partners. Up to 70% of the investment they have put in will go into developing the sport and identifying juniors who are looking to develop their golfing ability through learning technical skills and venturing out onto the golf course”, Said Larry Ngala, President, JGF.

“Over the last 21 years, we have been one of the biggest supporters of various golf initiatives across the country including CSR based golf events, global events such as Kenya Open and Ladies Invitational in Vipingo as well as our own events such as the Safaricom Business Golf Series. We now want to take it a step further and see how we can involve more young people in the sport by making it even more accessible. Our partnership with Junior Golf Foundation is just the first step in this journey,” said Peter Ndegwa, CEO, Safaricom.

“This partnership underscores our commitment to grow and nurture golf in the country. As a brand, we have invested significantly in the sport through the NCBA Golf Series and have so far held events across 17 courses drawing participation from over 2000 players. Undoubtedly, though, our greatest joy has been the outcomes of the junior golf tournaments, which have functioned as qualifiers for two international events – The Rome Classic event and Big Five South Africa golf event. We are delighted that this partnership with JGF will accelerate our journey to support young golf talent in the country to help them explore their potential and reach previously unimaginable heights in the game,” said John Gachora, Group Managing Director, NCBA Group.

“Crown Paints is a name that resonates well on the golf course with our Crown Xtreme Golf series which for many years has been a fusion of business and pleasure bringing together people from all walks of lives across the East African region. We have walked this journey with Junior Golf Foundation for over a decade by supporting the training and development of young golfers in the region to become professionals. The passion to see the growth of golf as a sport in the country is what drives us to initiate innovative programmes that will see the youth empowered to pursue their dreams of being able to contest at the global stage”, said Dr. Rakesh Rao, Crown Paints Plc Group Chief Executive Officer

“At Prime Bank, we have firmly committed our support in building a powerful future for young talented golfers, especially for those who cannot afford to take up the sport on a regular basis. For six years running, Prime Bank has been supporting junior golfers across the country nurture talent in the sport through its partnership with Junior Golf Foundation, Kenya Golf Union, and Visa. The partnership is driven by Prime Visa Golf Card – the first ever golf credit card in Kenya. To date, Prime bank has so far donated KShs. 5.3 Million to Junior Golf Foundation,” said Vijay Kantaria, Director, Business Development, Prime Bank

As part of the plans, JGF has partnered with U.S. Kids Golf Foundation (USKGF) to train 40 coaches from across the country. The coaches are expected to use the knowledge gained to introduce more young people to the sport as well as develop some into elite players. The local coaches will access the 4-day training free of charge with Junior Golf Foundation footing the bill.

“We are honored to partner with the JGF to bring our training to coaches and playing opportunities to boys and girls in Kenya,” said Dan Van Horn, President and Founder of U.S. Kids Golf.  “This is a remarkable nationwide initiative and we are committed to do our part in making these efforts successful in both bringing more kids to the game of golf and providing resources for coaches in to help some become elite players.”

The partnership will also see the introduction of a U.S. Kids Golf Local Tour Competition which will give qualifying golfers opportunities to play in Regional, International and World Championships competitions organized by the U.S. Kids Golf Foundation.

As part of the partnership USKGF will offer in depth, hands–on training in Kenya along with certifications through the Positive Coaching Alliance which provides online courses for coaches and athletes.

“Our mandate as the Ministry of Sports, Culture and Heritage, is to develop and promote the expansion of Kenya’s sports industry. The successful implementation of this program will contribute to the growth and development of the game of golf in Kenya”, said Amina Mohamed, Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Heritage and Culture.

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