HOPE for Veterans Pro-Am Seeks Players, Donations
Here’s a worthy charity:
On Friday, October 19, the Battle Creek, Mich. Branch of the PGA HOPE program will hold a Pro-Am to raise funds to improve the Custer Greens Golf Course on the grounds of the local VA Medical Center. The Pro-Am will be held at Stoatin Brae Golf Club in nearby Augusta.
Stoatin Brae should be on your must-play list. Here’s an opportunity to play it and do some good at the same time.
Registration will begin at 11:30 a.m. with lunch from noon-1 p.m. and a modified scramble format shotgun start at 1 p.m. The cost of the event is $600 per team which includes 1 pro and 4 amateurs. In addition, each team will be joined by a veteran from the Battle Creek PGA HOPE Program. Snacks, awards and prizes will follow golf. For more information, to register a team, or to donate, contact Bob Bales, 269-501-0262 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) is a therapeutic program to aid in the rehabilitation process for disabled Veterans. The purpose is to help Veterans assimilate back into their communities through the social interaction the game of golf provides. Led by PGA professionals certified in golf instruction for Veterans with disabilities, Project HOPE teaches Veterans the rules of the game, and for those already familiar with it, the professionals will help them refine their skills.
Learn more at https://www.va.gov/opa/pressrel/pressrelease.cfm?id=2759.
Bob Bales, PGA Professional and event organizer has been a Project HOPE volunteer since 2012 bringing golf, lessons, equipment, and support to residents and veterans at the VA Medical Center.
Bales said: “I do it because I like to see the smiles when some of these gentlemen find out they CAN play golf; even adaptive golf in some cases—when they might not otherwise have the chance.”
“We rely on donations to continue to offer this program to the Veterans in our area,” said Bales. “Currently our goal is to do some much-needed work on the Custer Greens course since that’s their home course located at the VAMC.”
Equipment like clubs, balls, and even hats and t-shirts are donated by the PGA and other supporters of the cause.
Project HOPE participant Sgt. Jason Fuller:
After my 3rd combat, I was introduced to PGA Project Hope at the VA Medical Center in Battle Creek, Mich. Throughout the 8 weeks of instruction and playing on Custer Greens at the VA in Battle Creek, I was able to deal with problems and ailments that I had endured during my 3 combat tours in support of The War on Terror in the Middle East. The 7 PGA Professionals that were our instructors and coaches were able—in some amazing way—to link our combat experiences to the Old-World game of Golf.
Since graduating Project Hope, in 2013, my game of golf has improved and taken me to places I never could have dreamed of. I have been to Austin for the PGA Annual Meeting Awards Ceremony and competed in a Skills Challenge with World Golf Hall of Famer Bernhard Langer at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship Media Day at Harbor Shores in Benton Harbor.
I also have been introduced to the Folds of Honor Foundation, and The Veterans Golf Association. Any help that you can provide to assist us in bringing Custer Greens back to its glory days of yesteryear would be greatly appreciated by all the patients and Veterans that are treated or visiting someone who is treated at the VA Medical Center.