Ms. Quinlan is an LPGA professional that for over 20 years has been teaching children of all abilities the art and etiquette of golf through junior golf programs. Two years ago she approached the Santa Barbara Golf Club with the idea of introducing golf to a much younger age group than is usually thought to be possible in the conventional world of junior golf.
The Guppy Golf website will let you know her mission is “to enhance the lives of children of all abilities ages 3 - 6 by providing a safe and fun environment to experience the outdoors, exercise and social skills that the game of golf inherently provides.” She indeed does accomplish this through humor and patience and an endearing smile that engages all participants in her program from child to parent to volunteer coaches. Each child is given individual attention and encouragement in such a way that by the end of the 1.5 hours of golf instruction and the final “Guppy Cheer!” the eager youth are wide eyed and ready to go anywhere this Pied Piper would lead them. Not only are children taught golf etiquette, they are taught the importance of looking someone in the eye when you shake their hand, patience when someone else is taking their turn, helping others, giving compliments, and the pure joy of being outdoors in a beautiful place surrounded by trees and green grass and happy faces. Something all ages could benefit from.
Ms. Quinlan had two “volunteer coaches” join her from A Different Point of View, a new aviation non-profit organization in Santa Barbara County. Joey and Lauren helped coach the children throughout the day as they learned the lesson of giving back and serving others. “I’m in love with these teenagers! They knew exactly what to do and what was needed to help these children. It just goes to show that when non-profits work together we engage more of our youth and make a bigger difference in our community,” said Quinlan.
To learn more about Guppy Golf and Sally Quinlan please go to: http://www.guppygolf.com
To learn more about A Different Point of View please go to: http://www.adifferentpointofview.org