The First Tee | Future Game Changers
Younger generations' engagement, participation and passion are critical to the future of any sport. Golf is fortunate to have a strong and dedicated youth development organization called First Tee helping shape a bright future for the lives of the youth and the game of golf.
Making a positive difference is core to the WYLD1 ethos. From day one we have been identifying solutions to minimize our environmental impact to help ensure golf’s future. Secondly, we felt it was important to demonstrate stewardship for the game of golf by partnering with organizations that help improve golf access opportunities. First Tee is a valued partner who is making a positive difference in the lives of youth and introducing them to the game of golf.
WYLD1 spoke with Justin Ratte of First Tee Greater Portland to help educate our members and followers on the great work of the First Tee and the status of youth golf.
“Since 1997, First Tee has brought character education through the game of golf to millions of young people from all backgrounds every year. We have a powerful mission to impact the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices,” said Justin Ratte.
“In our youth development program, we focus on creating a fun and meaningful culture of selfimprovement, good sportsmanship, community, and supporting each other's growth. We seamlessly integrate the game of golf to teach life skills and reinforce values like integrity, respect and perseverance. Companies like WYLD1 that are actively improving the community are important for golf, and for us to achieve our mission of positively impacting the youth with life lessons.”
Golf experienced a strong resurgence during the pandemic. According to the NGF, golf saw its largest increase of golfers in 17 years with a record number of new players and the biggest gain in youth golfers since 1997.
Like all organizations, First Tee faced significant challenges in evolving operations to ensure the health and safety of participants and staff. During this time of significant golf expansion Justin and First Tee put in serious overtime to quickly implement new safety protocols and to help prepare the growing number of youth golfers for their life journey on and off the course. The hard work paid off with over 3.7 million youth directly impacted through First Tee in 2020.
WYLD1 couldn't be prouder to partner with this great organization and the amazing people who make it happen. The future of golf is in great hands.
We encourage everyone to learn more about the powerful work of First Tee and help donate to future game changers: https://www.firstteegreaterportland.org/