Female students at Sunderland College will soon be teeing off thanks to a new golf scheme funded by Tyne & Wear Sport.
The college has been successful in a bid securing £750 to help with the creation of a new project offering golf lessons to female students.
These ‘Get into Ladies Golf’ sessions are aimed at 16 to 25-year-old students who are inactive or currently undertaking little physical activity to encourage them to participate in sports on a regular basis.
The scheme will give 20 female novice golfers the opportunity to take part in sessions ran by professional coaches at a variety of prestigious clubs in the region.
Lucy Oliver, sports development officer at Sunderland College, said: “This is a brand new initiative for the college and we are really excited to launch it. It is very important to engage young females in physical activity by providing them with opportunities to try out new sports. We felt that golf lessons were a fantastic way for the girls to improve their health by taking part in low impact exercise.
“By boosting their confidence and allowing them to experience a new form of physical activity, we hope this scheme will help students to experiment with different types of sport and for them to become more active in general.
“There has already been a lot of interest from students in the scheme and we are hoping that this will become a long-term initiative. We are very grateful to Tyne & Wear Sport for awarding us the bid and we are confident the scheme will help more young girls take up physical activity.”
James Hartley, Tyne & Wear Sport’s Sportivate project officer, said: “Getting more women and girls active and engaging in physical activity is a key priority of ours and supports and raises awareness of Sport England’s This Girl Can campaign. This is why we made this round of Sportivate funding for women and girls projects only.
“It is great that Sunderland College is working with us through Sportivate, as the student body will have a huge number of females who potentially are unaware of the sporting opportunities available to them. Hopefully the introduction of golf will raise activity levels at the college and inspire the women to take part in more sport on a more regular basis.”
Sunderland College already organises a variety of free sporting activities for its students including archery, kayaking and football as part of Sport England’s Sportivate project, which was set up as part of the London 2012 Olympic Legacy to give 14 to 25-year-olds access to free or subsidised coaching in a range of sports.
In addition, the college was also awarded £90,000 last year by Sport England out of its Further Education Activation Fund to set up a new ‘Give it a Go’ project.
The three-year scheme is designed to boost the number of students taking part in exercise by offering free sessions in trampolining, gym, netball, basketball, table tennis, dance and badminton.
The range of activities on offer to students complements the college’s other sporting provision which includes a comprehensive sports-related curriculum and development centres for elite men and women footballers, rugby players, swimmers and coaches.