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Fiji International Goes Back To School

The Fiji International is back to visiting primary schools around Fiji for the third consecutive year with an exciting six month golf instruction programme which began on June 13. After
07 Jul 2016 13:26
Fiji International Goes Back To School
Students of Nadi Sangam College after a golf practice session. Photo: Fiji International

The Fiji International is back to visiting primary schools around Fiji for the third consecutive year with an exciting six month golf instruction programme which began on June 13.

After successfully completing the first week of the 2016 Junior Golf Programme, students from Years’ One to Eight will continue to benefit from the monthly golf training instruction programme. Aiming to have 2700 students involved in the programme by the end of 2016

More than just a golf tournament, The Fiji International aims to leave a lasting legacy for golf in the Pacific region, with the PGA of Australia supporting initiatives to introduce and nurture the game in Fiji.

Targeting primary schools in Fiji will open another window of opportunity for students who find an interest in golf, giving them access to a sport outside of the common ones played in Fiji such as rugby, netball, and athletics.

“I love this sport, we don’t get to play this a lot in Fiji, so I am blessed to have Fiji International come to my school to teach this, and I’m hoping to make career out of this in the future,” said Ravisahek Simha a student of Saint Peter Chanel.

The golf instruction programme is targeting the involvement of as many schools as possible to spark an interest in the sport within the students. The 30-minute golf clinics provide students the experience of swinging a golf club and getting a feel for the sport.

“We have selected the schools this year based on access to surrounding golf courses. These clinics are all about creating an interest in golf and we saw from last year that over 1900 primary school students participated in the program which was fantastic,” said Natalie Ritter, general manager of Tournament Operations for the PGA of Australia.

“We also had four out of our 13 schools last year attend the Fiji International and experience a behind the scenes tour of the tournament.

“It was a huge thrill for the students. Having played golf themselves, they were so excited to watch and meet some of the best golfers in the world. It certainly motivated a lot of the students to continue practicing their own golf swings.”

Initiatives to increase the awareness and popularity of golf in Fiji are already underway, such as the school programme presented by the Fiji International and this year even more schools have been selected to be involved.

“This is a good opportunity for these students, when we were kids we never got to have this. I am happy to have the Fiji International teach my students a bit of golf knowledge,” said Meri Nahauvina , a teacher at Malomalo Primary School.

Last year, 13 schools were involved in a three week programme which also saw teachers undergo training to be able to deliver golf clinics all year round.

The Fiji International organisers are proud to see the continued growth of golf at the grass roots level with 16 schools being involved this year.

“We are looking forward to building on this program every year and with an increasing number of schools participating in the program, it is indeed encouraging to see we are on track with our plans,” added Ritter.

“We want the Fiji International to be a tournament for the people of Fiji and by introducing the game to children it will help build the fan base.

“By training teachers on how to deliver golf programs means that it’s not just the initial students involved in the golf programme who will benefit. The teachers will be able to introduce golf to all their future students too.”

The Fiji International will be sharing the golf experience with the following primary schools in the months to come:

Suva: Mahatma Gandhi Memorial, Marist Primary, Marcellin Primary

Deuba: Rampur Primary, Pacific Harbour Multicultural School, Lomary Catholic Primary.

Coral Coast/Sigatoka: Ratu Filise, St Peter’s Chanel, Andrha Sangam.

Natadola: Malomalo Primary, Tuva Indian Primary, Rahmatullah Khan Memorial.

Nadi: Namaka Public, Nadi Sangam.

Lautoka: Drasa Avenue, Lautoka Delana.

Source -Fiji International

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