The Western Golf Association (WGA) has partnered with the World Golf Foundation and other organizations to create Carry the Game, a groundbreaking advocacy group to promote youth caddying and the sport of golf.

Carry the Game will help introduce young students to the game of golf by creating opportunities for them to train and work as caddies while encouraging them to become lifelong players. The unique aspect of caddying allows young people to connect with business owners, professionals and other golfers to learn valuable life lessons, such as developing a strong work ethic and money management skills. They can even make professional contacts on the golf course that could benefit them later in their careers.

All of these opportunities are instrumental to students’ individual growth, and it can all be made possible through golf.

The goal of Carry the Game is to increase the number of youth caddies – and the diversity of those caddies – by helping to establish additional caddying opportunities at golf clubs nationwide and will serve as a resource for anyone interested in becoming a caddie or forming a youth caddie program. Carry the Game will also promote youth caddie programs as a way to create future golfers and preserve and enhance the tradition of caddying within the game of golf.

Some of the resources Carry the Game will offer will include caddie training materials and certification, a caddie club locator, best practices on creating and managing programs, media and public relations support, and knowledge and expertise on all caddie-related topics. The group will also begin an extensive research project this year to provide qualitative data on the current state of youth caddying to inform the initiative’s work.

WGA President and CEO John Kaczkowski says that Carry the Game will “provide young people with an early introduction to golf by creating life-changing opportunities to work as a caddie. Ultimately, we believe the experiences and mentorship gained through caddying are invaluable to a young person’s development and will help cultivate a lifelong passion for playing golf. Some of golf’s greatest players, as well as many of the world’s most successful executives, emerged from the caddie ranks. We look forward to supporting current and future caddies as they continue the legacy of a game so beloved and carry it forward for years to come.”

While Carry the Game will operate under the organizational umbrella of the WGA, this new effort will include the World Golf Foundation, United States Golf Association, PGA of America, The First Tee and Youth on Course, among other groups. This special collaboration will ensure Carry the Game’s long-term success while encouraging a new generation of young golfers to play the game.

Steve Mona, CEO of the World Golf Foundation, believes the creation of Carry the Game is long overdue: “Over the past few years, numerous leading golf organizations have discussed the importance of creating a governing body for youth caddying, and we’re excited to see that the WGA is spearheading this important initiative,” Mona said. “The WGA is a recognized leader in youth caddying, and we’re all looking forward to working together to help bring this effort to life.”

To learn more about Carry the Game and the Western Golf Association, visit www.wgaesf.com.