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Golf Australia to receive R&A funding to attract women and girls into golf

Golf Australia to receive R&A funding to attract women and girls into golf
March 15, 2018

Golf Australia, along with the governing bodies for golf in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales, is to receive further funding to increase participation in golf among women and girls from the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews (R&A).

Working with its affiliates around the world to enhance golf’s appeal, the investment forms part of the governing body’s drive to encourage more women, girls and families to play golf more regularly across the globe and to go on to become members of golf clubs.

An initial three-year funding package of £75,000 (AUS$133,000) per nation has been agreed between the R&A, Golf Australia, England Golf, the Golfing Union of Ireland/the Irish Ladies’ Golf Union, Scottish Golf and Wales Golf for the recruitment and appointment of experienced sports development staff.

The appointees will all work in partnership with golf’s various stakeholders to deliver innovative solutions and inspiring campaigns to boost participation at a time when more women are seeking an active lifestyle for both themselves and their families.

As a result of the funding, Golf Australia has recruited Chyloe Kurdas to the position of National Female Participation Manager.

Duncan Weir, Executive Director - Golf Development at the R&A, commented “women and girls continue to be an under-represented group throughout golf across the world and more work needs to be done to attract more of them into the sport at a time when we need to boost participation levels.

“We believe that there is a real opportunity, working with our affiliates, to develop inclusive and inspiring participation initiatives which show that golf is a fun and enjoyable leisure activity that can provide many social and health benefits for women and families.”

A recent research report commissioned by The R&A demonstrates that a significant growth opportunity exists for golf if it can attract more women, girls and families into playing the sport more often.

Kurdas, who will begin her new role with Golf Australia on Monday 9th April, has had a high-profile role in helping develop the thriving AFL Womens competition.

Bringing with her more than 20 years’ experience in leading significant cultural change and building gender equality, Kurdas is excited by her new challenge.

She explains “it’s a fascinating time for women and girls in sport and there’s a real appetite for change and development, so I think it’s really important for golf not to get left behind and get on the front foot.

“I feel like I have unique `IP’ in my head about growing opportunities for girls and women in sport and that it would be a waste not to use it.

“The role with Golf Australia I’m sure will make me feel challenged and that’s what I look forward to.”

Kurdas’ appointment is a key component of GA’s Vision 2025: The future of women and girls in golf, launched during the recent ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open.

At 42 and with a keen interest in golf but not a club membership, Kurdas said the Vision 2025 documents “spoke to her”.

She added “I love to play, but I can also see some of the aspects of the sport that are holding it back in many women’s minds.

“I can empathise with their thoughts and all golf facilities need to actively ask themselves how they make women feel included and engaged, because without that we’re up against it.

“It’s a really important time with so many different sports and other aspects of life competing for women and girls now - golf has to be part of that movement.

“We are uniquely placed in that there’s not just a high-performance aspect to golf, there’s also a strong leisure and recreation component and it’s a lifetime sport.

“We just haven’t maximised golf’s potential yet - the ability to use the power and appeal the sport has to so many people.”

Kurdas lectures at Melbourne Business School and Melbourne University and is known to many as an expert commentator and analyst on AFLW across several mediums.

Her most recent sport-specific role was as AFL Victoria Female Football Development Manager where she was responsible for leading the growth of female participation that culminated in the establishment of the ground-breaking AFLW competition.

She was also one of 17 women globally chosen to participate in a five-week mentorship with the LPGA in Florida, provided professional development for LPGA game development staff and was involved with strategy development around the Navistar Classic LPGA tournament.

Golf Australia Development Director Cameron Wade said Kurdas’ appointment capped an exhaustive three-month process.

Wade concluded “it was extremely important to us to find the best possible person for such a vital role for the sport - and in Chyloe we are confident we’ve done that from among a list of very strong candidates.

“Chyloe has the skills and experience to lead the implementation of the Vision 2025 whole of sport blueprint with a focus on cultural change.

“Our collective goal is to transform the game of golf in Australia into one that is highly engaging and fully inclusive for women and girls across all levels and we are very appreciative of the R&A’s support in partly funding the role.”

Images: Women golfers at the R&A (top and below, courtesy of the R&A) and Chloe Kurdas [centre] at AFL Victoria (below).

13th February 2018 - GOLF AUSTRALIA RELEASES STRATEGY TO INCREASE FEMALE PARTICIPATION AND CHANGE CULTURE 

21st December 2017 - GOLF AUSTRALIA LOOKS FOR WOMEN’S OPEN TO BOOST FEMALE PARTICIPATION 

4th December 2017 - DETAILS AND SIX SPEAKERS CONFIRMED FOR 2018 GOLF BUSINESS FORUM

2nd November 2017 - GOLF DELIVERS ECONOMIC AND WELLBEING BENEFITS 

29th November 2017 - SOUTH AUSTRALIA’S YEAR OF SPORT CELEBRATED AT AWARDS EVENT 

20th October 2017 - ASIAN GOLF SUMMIT TO LOOK AT INCREASING FEMALE PARTICIPATION

9th October 2017 - AUSTRALIA’S FIRST TOPGOLF TO OPEN IN JUNE 2018

24th July 2017 - LADIES PROFESSIONAL GOLF ASSOCIATION SETS STRICT NEW DRESS CODE REGULATIONS FOR PLAYERS

2nd May 2017 - GOLF REPORT SHOWS AUSTRALIA-WIDE RISE IN COMPETITION ROUNDS 

8th December 2016 - LANDMARK STUDY FINDS SPORT STRUGGLING TO KEEP YOUTH ENGAGED 

21st September 2016 - PUBLIC GOLF FACILITIES AUSTRALIA ATTRACTS MEMBER INTEREST

11th July 2016 - GROUND BREAKING RESEARCH POINTS TO POSITIVE FUTURE FOR AUSTRALIAN GOLF INDUSTRY

31st May 2016 - FUTURE OF GOLF PARTICIPATION BASED ON FAN ENGAGEMENT

24th July 2014 - SWING FIT AIMS TO BOOST FEMALE GOLF PARTICIPATION THROUGH SOCIAL AND WELLNESS ENGAGEMENT


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However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

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