The other aspect I wonder about from time to time is what this junior golf program has meant to the Gateway PGA Section. Being involved with a great facility like Ranken Jordan has certainly led to me being involved in a variety of golf tournaments, dinners, and other functions that I otherwise would not have been a part of. But the Gateway PGA Section has also seen some benefits. Recently I received an e-mail from our Executive Director, Josh Riley, PGA, explaining how the Section has benefited:
Ranken Jordan – A Pediatric Specialty Hospital is a special place to children across the country and to the Gateway PGA. Through our charitable arm, the Gateway PGA Foundation, we have been able to donate equipment to the hospital. The donation of equipment would be fruitless if not for the time that has been put in by local PGA Professionals. The idea and the passion were brought forth by Kevin Corn, PGA. The concept is simple from the view point that it is providing a reprieve for kids who battle through countless hours of rehabilitation and medical treatment. However, the concept is much deeper when you look at the relationships that have been formed and the joy that exudes from a child when they realize they can play golf in their own special way. The Ranken Jordan program has allowed the Gateway PGA to give back through golf while hopefully improving the outlook on a few kids’ lives.
To me it is a sign of a very successful junior golf program when everyone involved sees benefits. I will be the first one to jump up and say I have seen countless personal and professional benefits from my involvement. As you read in Josh Riley's comments the Gateway PGA has seen many benefits. Ranken Jordan has seen happier kids, expanded therapy options, additional media attention, and donations from the Gateway PGA Golf Day. The game of golf is growing and adding new players from the participants in our program (as well as family members, friends, Ranken Jordan staff members, etc). But most importantly, the kids involved have received benefits. Regardless of how everyone else has benefited or improved, none of it would matter if the kids were not having fun and getting better.