The Calgary Police Service has partnered with the city of Calgary golf courses for Operation Tee-Time, a pilot project that provides free golf lessons to youth from the South Asian community between the ages of six and 18.
“We are committed to making golf in Calgary more inclusive and welcoming and are pleased to offer this opportunity,” said John Faber, acting golf lead with City of Calgary Golf Courses.
“It’s affordable, it’s accessible and it’s a game for everyone.”
Throughout the month of August, 36 youth from across Calgary are taking lessons at McCall Lake Golf Course. The pilot was launched through a partnership between the Calgary Police Service Diversity Resource Team and the city of Calgary golf courses. There were more than 120 applicants for the program.
Operation Tee-Time includes seven free lessons in three age groups.
“This is when we want to get them involved, because golf is a game you can play for life,” said Faber.
The goal is to get kids outdoors, and off their electronics, to learn a new sport that will boost their confidence and create a positive connection with police
“It’s the smile on the kids face when they hit a good shot. That’s a positive reinforcement for them,” said Const. Randy Randhawa, the South Asia liaison officer with the Calgary Police Service Diversity Resource Team.
Operation Tee-Time participant Jaisveen Nagra has quickly developed a passion for the sport, and said the best part about playing golf is watching the ball land after a hit. She hopes her mom with allow her to continue playing in the future.
“It feels like you’re at a competition and you have to win first prize,” said Jaisveen Nagra.
“You learn honesty, patience, integrity and concentration.”
Following the pilot program, Calgary police and the city plan to explore future opportunities to provide lessons for kids from all communities.
“If some of the kids do pick up the game as a professional sport there’s lots of scholarships for your bachelor’s degree, that’s another thing these kids can look forward to,” said Randhawa.
“We see kids that might go down the wrong path and our idea is to make sure that kids find something productive to do.”