(Dubai, UAE) – Global port operator DP World has again signaled its commitment to growing the game of golf at a grassroots level in the UAE region by supporting a groundbreaking initiative being led by the Emirates Golf Federation, which will introduce the sport to over 3,000 Arabic schoolchildren over the next three months.
The title sponsors of the European Tour’s season-ending DP World Tour Championship, Dubai taking place at the stunning Jumeirah Golf Estates for the eighth time from Thursday 17 to Sunday 20 November, strive to not only host one of the world’s most prestigious professional global golf events, but to support initiatives which align with their goal of bringing more Arab juniors into the sport.
The programme, which is also being supported by the European Tour and DP World Tour Championship Host Venue Jumeirah Golf Estates, will see specialist coaches from Golf DXB host ‘introduction to golf’ sessions for over 3,000 students at UAE National Schools including American Academy Al Mizar, School of Research Science, Al Itihad Al Mamzar, Sheikh Rashid School For Boys, Al Itihad Jumeirah and Al Khaleej School.
Around 180 students will also visit Jumeirah Golf Estates for the star-studded DP World Tour Championship in November where they will be given a tour of the world-class facilities before seeing the top 60 players on the European Tour Race to Dubai rankings competing in the tournament.
As a follow-up from the introductory sessions, commencing in January 2017 at least 50 schoolchildren will embark upon a four-week coaching programme to develop their skills and nurture their love of the game at facilities including the renowned European Tour Performance Institute at Jumeirah Golf Estates, home of the UAE National Golf Team, where European Tour Race to Dubai Top 10 players such as Henrik Stenson, Rafa Cabrera Bello and Justin Rose have trained.
The initiative will feed into the Emirates Golf Federation’s National Junior Development Program, which aims to produce new talented golfers who can one day go on to represent the UAE at a senior level and perhaps even join the professional ranks with a view to competing on the European Tour.
Adel Zarouni, Vice Chairman of the Emirates Golf Federation believes the programme will be vital in unearthing new golfing talent among the local population, saying: “This programme, created by the Emirates Golf Federation, aims to develop the growth of aspiring youngsters and create more awareness about the sport. The initiative is funded by DP World and supported by the European Tour and Jumeirah Golf Estates and we’re very grateful for their backing. It’s all about attracting children to golf and spreading the sport across the schools in the region.”
“The plan is to have more youngsters playing golf, especially Emirati girls as we have a shortage of female Emirati golfers. I believe that this initiative will help us find the hidden talents and also improve the sport in the country.”
Dr. Abdulla Al Karam, Director General and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Knowledge and Human Development Authority said: “Children are happy when they have new experiences that enrich their lives. Golf is a great sport for having fun, and teaches important life qualities such as respect for others, focus and problem-solving. We’re happy to work together with the Emirates Golf Federation, DP World and the European Tour to bring the joys of golf to a new generation of UAE nationals.”
Abdulaziz Bukhatir, Executive Director, Jumeirah Golf Estates said: “As home to the UAE golf team and the destination of choice for many players from around the world, Jumeirah Golf Estates is fully committed to extending our passion for golf to amateur and professional golfers alike. We are proud to be a part of this major grassroots initiative that will place golf front of mind among a new generation of young sporting stars.”
Nick Tarratt, Director European Tour – Dubai added: “This region has become synonymous with golf – frequently hosting the European Tour’s finest players, on the best courses and offering some of the best facilities in the world. The next step to produce a home-grown UAE player who can compete on the European Tour and this fantastic Arabic Schools Initiative will lay the foundations to do just that.
“Supporting grassroots golf initiatives is central to DP World’s involvement in the sport and something they care very passionately about.
“We look forward to welcoming the schoolchildren to the tournament in November and to seeing the next generation of golfers emerge in the UAE.”