Anthony Gordon with junior golfers from Forbes at the 2011 Emirates Australian Open. Photo: Supplied
Forbes Junior Coordinator Anthony Gordon has been awarded Golf Australia's inaugural Community Coach Award.
The Junior Coordinator at Forbes Golf Club, Gordon, has been an accredited Community Golf Coach since November 2011. An avid golfer, Anthony has a handicap of 15 and although he would like to spend time on his own game to become a single figure golfer he has shifted his focus to providing an opportunity for the kids in Forbes to experience the game of golf.
Forbes’ junior program has flourished since Anthony took on the role on Junior Coordinator. As there is no resident professional, the club relies heavily on Community Coaches like Anthony to teach and mentor the children. Under Anthony’s guidance, Forbes is now a registered MYGolf Centre and has more than 60 participants enrolled in the program.
Since introducing the MYGolf program at the club, Anthony has gone to great lengths to ensure the program remains successful. Together with fellow Junior Committee member, Brett Thomas, he has gained support from the Forbes Golf Veterans, Ladies and Men’s Committees as well as parents of the MYGolf participants and as such has diversified the membership of the Junior Committee.
To ensure the stability of junior golf in the area, Anthony hosted a MYGolf Teacher Training Day to create a link between the local schools and the club as well as a Community Coaching Course where he recruited 10 coaches who now support the delivery of the MYGolf program.
Sharon Nott from the Jack Newton Junior Golf (JNJG) Foundation said, Anthony goes above and beyond in his role as Junior Coordinator.
“He has lead from the front, putting on many hats from coaching to barbequing to transporting juniors at five o’clock in the morning to get to tournaments.” Nott said.
Anthony’s love and enjoyment of the game rubs off on the juniors who have been given plenty of opportunities to not only develop at their own pace, but work through a structured pathway.
“With no golf professional at Forbes Golf Club, Anthony has worked closely with JNJG to ensure that the juniors don’t miss out on anything” Nott said.
Inclusivity is the main message and Anthony ensures that not only are all kids welcome, but they have an enjoyable experience and feel part of a team. Promoting a healthy lifestyle is also a focus for Anthony who is actively involved with Forbes soccer club as a manager/coach. He realises that kids need a balance in life and should experience as many sports as possible while they are growing up.
Some of the additional initiatives and programs that Anthony has been able implement as a Community Coach are:
• School Holiday Camps supported by JNJG. The MYGolf program is now based on two MYGolf camps in April and October followed up by six week programs.
• Hosted a Pump Golf Day after the April 2012 camp to provide an opportunity for the juniors to experience some on course golf.
• Together with the support of the JNJG and Country Junior Golf, took a group of 13 juniors to the 2011 Emirates Australian Open and is planning to do the same this year.
• Gained the support and sponsorship of local businesses for the MYGolf program.
• Together with fellow Community Coaches, Brett Thomas and Peter Cripps, assisted the local school in completing a four week MYGolf program.
• With the support of the Junior Committee, introducing MYGolf Sponsorship for junior teams to enter the Forbes summer business house comp in 2011 and 2012. This has helped create a pathway to 18 hole golf.
More than just a Community Coach, Anthony has become a great ambassador for junior golf. Going from nothing to a solid program within a two year period whilst the club has been going through difficult times is nothing short of amazing. Gaining the support of the club members, local school and the community, Anthony has opened a golfing door for young golfers that had been shut out for many years. Along with the 60 plus participants enrolled in MYGolf, there are now more than 25 junior members of the golf club who are playing in regular competitions.
Sharon Nott believes Anthony has much to be proud of in terms of his community coaching.
“Being able to find the time to do all of the above, meet work commitments, raise a family and still have a wife would be what Anthony would consider his outstanding Community Coaching achievements!”
Congratulations Anthony and thank you for all the work you do as a Golf Australia accredited Community Coach.