When the Character Development Mobile Unit began classes at George Elementary there was a quiet, shy 5th grader in class. She kept to herself and didn’t talk much, even after attending for a few weeks, but still she kept showing up every single day. Her mom worked at George and felt her daughter would benefit from the program to help build her confidence, work on her social skills, and bring her out of her shell. Quiet as she was, she joined every Mobile Unit session that was offered at her school. She always had a good attitude, but continued to keep to herself.
This summer we had the opportunity to offer some scholarships to Mobile Unit participants to attend our Summer Golf Camps held at our Lowell facility. This girl and her brother had the chance to come to our facility for the first time to experience golf. It didn’t take long for her to realize that she really enjoyed golf, and that it made her happy. Before long, she wasn’t as quiet and she wasn’t as shy. She began to come out of her shell, started smiling more, and was engaging in class. The change didn’t happen overnight, but after consistent exposure to our programming, and coaches who were pouring into her on a regular basis, she started to show more of her true personality.
This girl’s name is Kynli. She will be an upcoming 6th grader this next year, and feels better equipped to head back to school. According to her mom, the reserved, quiet girl she once was has turned into a more confident, outgoing girl who is not as afraid to try new things. Because of Kynli’s newfound confidence, and her growing interest in the game of golf, our goal is to help her get plugged in with our programming classes that are more golf-centric than the Mobile Unit classes provide.
When we say we are impacting kids, Kynli is a tremendous example of what that looks like. Yes, we teach golf, but we are so much more than that. Donations to First Tee – NWA allow us the opportunity to take the Mobile Unit and our Character Strong curriculum out into the communities. Donations to First Tee – NWA allow us to help kids like Kynli – coming out of her shell, growing confidence, being more comfortable trying new things. Golf was not a sport she had tried before, and wouldn’t have had the opportunity to do so without our programming. We love seeing the game grow, but also seeing how golf can intrinsically teach such vital life skills and help to build character in today’s youth. We are BUILDING GAME CHANGERS and cannot wait to see what Kynli’s future holds.