THE SCOTTISH  BLIND GOLF SOCIETY.

 

YOUTH LIAISON OFFICER REPORT 1989.

 

 

The promotion of golf to visually impaired students, has been received with enthusiasm at the eleven establishments of Education which I have visited on three or more occasions throughout the year.

 

There were a number of teething problems to sort out. Firstly to accommodate the children from the different year groups into the scheduled golf lessons.

 

In the case of Uddingston Grammar,I introduced golf to all pan- disability groups attending the school, so the demand for golf tuition was high.

 

 I arranged two golf classes.  To save too much disruption to classroom work, one golf lesson was scheduled during the children’s lunch break, plus a twenty minute time allowance courtesy of the Headmaster.

The other tuition period was scheduled for a PE period

 

To further promote golf for the visually impaired, sponsored by the Golf Foundation, I visited the following schools / Colleges over the year, Ashcraig school, St Vincents, Knowltop Primary,  Kelvin Primary,Castlehill Primary, Kaimes Primary, Moray House, The Royal Blind School Edinburgh, Craigsbarns Primary  and Secomdary schools Dundee.  I am scheduled to meet students at Motherwell College later this month. I have liaised with Mrs Mary Lorrie, the Superintendent of Allwyn House, Ceres, however neither this establishment or the Forfar Guide Dog Centre met the criteria for sponsored coaching as laid down by the Golf Foundation.

 

 I also spoke at length to the Chief Mobility Officer, Mr Wells, at the National Blind School / College Hereford. I have been assured he is willing to operate the Golf Foundation Classes for his pupils.

 

 

In the Glasgow area there are 33 students receiving golf coaching, six of whom are aged sixteen or over while the remainder range from 11 to 15.  Twenty four of the children from Uddingstone, St Vincent’s and Ash Craig are coached by Gary Mitchell at the Clyde way Driving Range. The remainder nine who attend Kelvin Primary are tutored by David Scott.

 

There are nine children interested in the coaching scheme, at Castle hill Primary School in Bearsden which is based at the Resource Administration unit for visually impaired in Dunbartonshire, so far no satisfactory arrangement can be made to schedule the coaching due to the distance of transport which involves five different journeys of between 15 and 25 miles.

 

There are 10 students currently interested in golf at the Royal Blind School Edinburgh and are being coached by the PGA Professional John Henderson.  Two School leavers from RBS have carried on with their coaching, Gordon White has spoken to Harry Lyddall with a view to joining the East of Scotland District, Jim McCrosson has started Motherwell College and will have the opportunity to continue his coaching through that establishment.

 

I am also pleased to report on the interest and enthusiasm of the students at Craigbarns Primary and Secondary Schools in Dundee, although small in comparative numbers attending to other schools, six of the students will start their Coaching Scheme under the guidance of Jackie Black the PGA Professional at Craig Park. Two of these pupils have already attained a reasonable standard of golf technique one of whom plays golf on a fairly regular basis with his father.

 

This particular Golf Foundation Scheme is designed to help visually impaired people who are in full time education, to play golf. There are two distinct parts to the scheme. 1- Learning the technique of playing golf. 2 – Learning the Rules and Etiquette of the game. 

 

Prior to starting the GF Scheme at the various schools, I visited a number of Golf Professionals who were enthusiastic and looked forward to the new challenge of teaching golf to the visually impaired.

 

The two stages of the scheme as outlined, open the door to the Merit Award Scheme which is an incentive for the pupils to improve their technique and to make them more knowledgeable on the rules and etiquette of golf.

 

The merit award is broken into four stages, Green, Bronze, Silver and gold. On passing each stage the student will qualify for a certificate, a badge and a personal identify card in the appropriate colour. 

 

The Golf Foundation recommends that Golf clubs allow Golf Foundation Identity card holders to play golf for a nominal green fee at off peak times.

 

I am now pleased to report that on the recommendation of the Golf Professional coaching the students, all of those in the 16 plus age category will be completing the Green Badge Award during the 1990 summer Term.  The standard needed to be successful in the Green Award is;

 

1. Must have received eight hours tuition, in Golf Foundation classes.

 

2.  Obtain at least 50% mark in six written questions in the rules of golf.

3. Obtain at least 50% mark in the written question on the etiquette of Golf.

4.Display an understanding of the clubs and their uses and where possible have played some golf with the supervision of a Golf Professional.

5.Produce one countersigned card of at least nine holes played, 18 holes are preferred, showing at least one hole in three over par or better.

 

It is now recommended that students successful in the Green Award should be considered for District membership of the SBGS, to enable the realisation of this Programme to be established.

 

G T Kelly.  Youth Liaison Officer to SBGS