Lincolnshire PGA professional Darren Game has achieved golf’s first DEAFinitely Inclusive Mark in England.
DEAFinitely Inclusive is UK Deaf Sports’ programme to provide deaf and hard of hearing people with information about clubs and facilities so they can be confident of receiving a fun and friendly sporting experience.
The DEAFinitely Inclusive Mark is a quality assurance mark that deaf and hard of hearing people will receive a good service, including:
• Coaches trained in deaf awareness
• Clear details of how to contact the club by text or email
• Support and expertise on how to develop as a player coach or volunteer
Game, who teaches at his indoor Bourne Golf Centre and his Lincolnshire Junior Academy at Toft Golf Club, said: “Golf is a great sport for deaf and disabled people, whether it’s developing your own skills and etiquette or playing as part of a team.
“Making the game accessible to all within the local community is a passion of mine and obtaining the DEAFinitely Inclusive Mark will open up the game to more people.”
Becoming DEAFinitely Inclusive was a key aim for Game as he continued to develop his skills and make his existing coaching and playing opportunities more inclusive of deaf and hard of hearing people.
He is a keen advocate that golf can be a game for all and has worked hard to develop links in his local area. These include Willoughby School where pupils with a range of impairments have benefitted from being involved in golf. Two of the pupils are continuing their golf at Toft, where Game has a junior development role.
Jamie Blair, Disability Manager for England Golf, commented: “It is really pleasing to see a coach and a facility make a strong commitment to including deaf participants in their golfing activity.
“England Golf will continue to encourage more facilities to adopt the Mark and engage with their local deaf networks in partnership with UK Deaf Sport and England Deaf Golf.”
Clive Breedon, National Participation Officer from UK Deaf Sport, commented: “UK Deaf Sport are very pleased to accredit Bourne Golf Centre and their work with The Lincolnshire Junior Golf Academy as DEAFinitely Inclusive. Darren is keen to make golf accessible to people who are deaf or hard of hearing so we look forward to supporting him to do so.”