How To Help

To contribute to the Ranken Jordan junior golf program or to ask any questions please e-mail me at This blog is not affiliated with Ranken Jordan. The views expressed on this blog are those of the author and not those of Ranken Jordan. Thank you for reading!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Donating A Smile

The single most rewarding part of the junior golf program at Ranken Jordan is seeing the smiles on the faces of the kids when they hit a good golf shot or make a putt.  Yes it is great to see the kids who enjoy the game so much that they continue to play after they leave the hospital.  And it is wonderful to watch family members smile and cry when they watch shot after shot flying through the air.  But nothing compares to that ear-to-ear smile when a kid feels that "click" from a well struck shot and realizes that they can play golf regardless of their physical limitations.

Elijah making another chip shot into the net.  The progress he has made with his rehabilitation is amazing; his wheelchair is a thing of the past!
 Several of the posts on this blog have mentioned how supportive Josh Riley and the Gateway PGA Foundation have been.  Their help and support have allowed this program to succeed and impact many more kids than we could have ever imagined.  It is true that the support from the facility (Ranken Jordan) and instructors (PGA Professionals) will ultimately determine the success of the program.  However, without the backing of the Gateway PGA Foundation the program would have been much more difficult to get off the ground.  They have generously provided the equipment necessary to allow the kids to learn the game of golf and enjoy the benefits of being involved with a sport alongside other kids.  The only question that has ever been asked is "What do you need?"

The Gateway PGA Section does not have to be alone when it comes to supporting the junior golf program at Ranken Jordan.  You can get involved in your own way and to whatever level you are comfortable.  You can go to bed every night knowing that you provided the necessary support for one (or more) of these amazing kids to show off their ear-to-ear smile.  Are you asking yourself, "How can I be the reason for the excitement and enjoyment these kids are seeing every week through the game of golf?"  If you are the answer is very simple:  Donate to the junior golf program.  Here are just some of the golf-related items we use, or could use, on a regular basis:

  • US Kids Golf Clubs:  As mentioned in many of the posts these are the clubs we use each week for the clinics.  I would like to be able to send at least 1 club home with each kid who expresses a real interest in continuing to play the game of golf when they leave the hospital.  One young man, Corey, who I wrote about in a previous post, went home with a putter, putting green, and golf balls.  We unfortunately do not have the means to do this with very many of the kids.
  • Almost Golf Balls:  These are the golf balls we use for the clinics.  They are limited flight, much softer than regular golf balls, and allow us to move seamlessly from outdoors to indoors when weather dictates.  When kids go home with golf clubs we would also like to be able to send some of these golf balls with them.
  • Golf Accessories:  Hats, towels, ball mark repair tools, etc.  One of the visions I had for this program was having a "going home package" to give to the kids when they leave the hospital.  As mentioned above, this would be for those who are seriously interested in continuing to play once they go home.  It would be wonderful to be able to set up the kids with some of the basic items needed for a round of golf.  The few hats I have given to the kids, all with the Ranken Jordan logo somewhere on the hat, have been incredibly popular.
  • Practice Aids:  Putting mats, chipping nets, and full-swing nets are used each week in the clinics.  These would also be great items to send home with the kids who would benefit from using them to further their golf game.  Corey certainly enjoys the putting mat he went home with!
Corey & his mother with the practice putting mat and putter that he went home with.  He also received some Titleist golf balls to use for his practice!

Some of you may be concerned about making sure you are purchasing the correct items to donate.  You can solve that issue one of two ways by either making a monetary donation or contacting me to guide you to the right items.  Whichever path you choose to proceed down, I encourage you to contact me first (my e-mail address is at the top of the page) and I will gladly answer any questions you may have.  Your donations can go directly to Ranken Jordan or to the Gateway PGA Foundation.  Both organizations are 501 (c)(3) charities so you will receive the necessary information for your taxes.  Another way to make a financial contribution is to the Gateway PGA Golf Day.  These donations will go to various charities, Ranken Jordan being one, around the Gateway PGA Section and can be made through August 8, 2013.  Please click HERE to be taken to the donation page.

Establishing this program has easily been the best thing I have ever done in my golf career.  Having the knowledge that what we are doing at Ranken Jordan is making such a huge difference is an amazing feeling.  You can enjoy that same feeling by knowing that you are providing the means for these kids to enjoy the game of golf.  Please contact me with any questions you have or to make a donation.  Not only will you impact the lives of the kids at Ranken Jordan, but you will have an impact on your own life as well.

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