Recruiting for new PGA HOPE season under way

Free program supports
area veterans

By Rich O‘Brien

Recruiting for the Spring series of PGA HOPE Charleston program is underway. The popular Golf Therapy Program which stands for Helping Our Patriots Everywhere is a partnership between the VA and the PGA of America. The program has proven to be an excellent way for veterans and active duty personnel with injuries, illnesses, or challenges to improve the quality of their lives and reintegrate back into society.
Veterans with no previous golf experience are welcome and in many cases have been those that have benefited the most from the program.
The PGA HOPE program is at the front lines in the battle against PTSD. The Charleston chapter has been honored by the PGA REACH Foundation as their model program. In a recent interview with four of the veterans they explained the benefits of the program this way:
“The PGA HOPE Charleston program has allowed us to trade nightmares and flashbacks for golf dreams and new friendships.”
The program will again be offered in the North Area (Wescott Golf Club), West Ashley (Links of Stono Ferry), and Mt. Pleasant (Daniel Island Club) areas. The demand for the program continues to grow and for this series a second location in the North Area at Wrenwoods Golf Course on the Charleston Air Base will be added to keep up with the ever increasing demand.
With the addition of Wrenwoods that will bring the total to four courses where the program will be offered. Although we try to accommodate all those that are interested, spots tend to fill up quickly.
We would like to thank Hardees and the Stand Up and Play Foundation for their tremendous support and sponsorship of that program that has allowed us to continue to expand the program to meet the needs of the local veterans.
We would also like to thank the ownership, management and professional staffs at the host clubs that have been so cordial to the participants of the program.
Please help us continue to spread the word among the veteran population that PGA HOPE Charleston is available to provide them with a hand up. As the program continues to expand we would also like the assistance of additional PGA Professionals, First Tee Instructors, peer mentors, therapists (physical, occupational, and recreational ), and volunteers are always appreciated to assist with the program.
For more information, or to register for the program, contact Rich O’Brien at 843-826-0837 or by email at richobriengolf@gmail.com.