(Published 27th March 2015)
On Course Foundation is reaching its 5th Anniversary in the summer of 2015, and in order to meet the needs of their growing number of beneficiaries, we aim to hold more Golf Skills & Employment Events in 2015 than ever before. These three day events follow on from our Introductory Golf Events, and aim to build on golf techniques and knowledge, as well as offering an opportunity for the injured, wounded and sick Service personnel and veterans to enquire about, and prepare for, jobs in the golf industry.
The final week of March saw one such event: the picturesque Whitefields Golf Course played host to the charity’s first Golf Skills and Employment Event of 2015. Luckily for the twenty four attendees, the sun was shining and the weather remained glorious over the three days – a rare treat in England, let alone in March.
The Golf Skills & Employment Events also feature one-on-one employment interviews, a chance to learn about opportunities in the golf industry from industry professionals, as well as golf tuition and development of the game led by dedicated Advanced PGA Teaching Professionals. “We’re really excited to be able to build on the skills and techniques that the members have already begun to learn at previous events,” Alex Woolston, Operation Manager, states. “I keep in contact with the men and women who attend our events, and to see their progress is phenomenal; many had not even considered playing golf before. Discussing, and potentially preparing them for roles in the golfing industry is also incredibly rewarding.”
More than that though, Alex adds, is “seeing the Service personnel and veterans regain some of what they thought they had lost.” Members of the On Course Foundation are able to feel a tremendous sense of camaraderie and teamwork when playing golf as Tom Stimpson, who was attending his first Golf Skills & Employment Event, agreed: “it was a fresh start, and the whole event has been very rewarding”. Whatever the calibre of the golfer, they once again belong to something and are able to exercise their competitive nature. Golf, although for many of our members, not a sport they had played or even considered prior to their injury, becomes an exercise in both their mental and physical recovery. It offers a unique platform, due to the handicap system, where players of all skills and backgrounds can compete healthily and on a level playing field.
To track the progress, both in their golfing ability, and in their preparation for employment, we have recently launched a logbook called ‘Pathway to Golf.’ For six of the twenty four attendees at Whitefields Golf Club, it was their first event and thus the beginning of their journey. Tom commented that he would “absolutely recommend OCF… the welcome, friendship and tuition has been so very beneficial to me, and I hope to be part of the OCF’s future. The sport is perfect in recovery for all manner of injuries”.
On Course Foundation is grateful for all of the support and donations that have been given, and will greatly welcome any more, as it tries to reach more deserving beneficiaries and aid them on their road to recovery. There are many ways that people can aid the charity. Our website offers some great suggestions, from fundraising events to taking OCF on as a Captain’s Charity, donating via text to using ‘give as you live’. Alternatively, if you’d like to offer employment opportunities or work placements, then contact us at 020 8334 3010 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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(Published 20th March 2015)
Welcome to the first newsletter of 2015. As we celebrate our fifth anniversary, we know that this year will be a busy, eventful and most rewarding year.
Three months into this seminal year and we have already had a number of exciting new developments with the launch of our Ambassador Initiative and a successful first Winter Skills. To meet the needs of our WIS beneficiaries, we’ll be running more events in 2015 than ever before, and are looking to extend the events season with more Warm Weather and Winter Skills activity to fully support our beneficiaries throughout the year. Dedicated steps have also been taken so that beneficiaries can track their progress, both on and off the golf course, through our newly designed Pathway to Golf. We hope that these great strides will help empower even more of our beneficiaries and give them the skills and confidence to succeed in life outside of the Services. (more…)
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(Published 3rd March 2015)
This year marks the 5th Anniversary of On Course Foundation and the 150th Anniversary of Royal Wimbledon Golf Club.
We are proud to offer a select number of companies and individuals the opportunity to join us in celebrating these occasions by attending a very special golf day on September 16th 2015.
As a venue, Royal Wimbledon not only represents one of the finest golf courses in the country, but it is also the place where On Course Foundation first started its journey. John Simpson, the Founder of the charity and long serving Member of the Club, first piloted our initiative on the famous practice green back in 2009.
We are delighted to hold such a wonderful event at the Club. If you would like to attend, either as an individual or team, we’d love to celebrate on a day filled with golf, lunch and prestigious auction items. You’ll not only have the chance to meet the charity’s incredible beneficiaries but will also see first hand how golf has been able to get them back on course.
If you’d like more information, please contact Mark Kemp on 07720 809 509, or email email@example.com.
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(Published 26th February 2015)
Paul Swain is a proud Member of On Course Foundation and Afghan War veteran, who lost part of one arm & suffered serious injuries in an explosion in Helmand Province. Paul has used golf as his main rehabilitation, winning competitions in America and in Britain, and was the inspirational guest speaker at the farewell dinner of Robert Hardie, Branston Golf Club’s retiring captain.
Following extensive treatment at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and rehabilitation at the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre in Surrey Paul rekindled a childhood love of golf with our help. A former staff sergeant with 9th./12th. Lancers, Paul commented on the importance of golf in his rehabilitation: ‘Having lost the job I loved, half of one arm and the companionship of mates in the Army I’ve been very fortunate to join the On Course Foundation and compete in golf on a level playing field making new friends and enjoying the wonderful game of golf’ ‘That and the public acceptance of what I do has given me a new purpose in life’ he added.
‘Having enjoyed a day’s hospitality at Branston Golf & Country Club with its amazingly friendly Clubhouse, pool, gym & superb looking courses and magnificent golf facilities I’m convinced it’s one of the finest and most successful club’s in the Midlands and I’ll be coming back to play here’ said Paul.
We’re incredibly grateful to all at Branston Golf & Country Club for their support, and for making Paul feel so welcome.
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(Published 23rd February 2015)
We’re looking to recruit two talented individuals that are passionate about making a difference. As the only Services golf charity that supports wounded, injured and sick service personnel and veterans through golf, we have a clear vision and are looking for exceptional candidates to help deliver and develop our operational activity with a focus in the Midlands and North of the UK.
No two days are the same with us and you will be tasked with managing all operational activity in your area of responsibility to ensure successful delivery of the charity’s employment and event programmes as well as sourcing fundraising opportunities. You will need to be a proven self-starter with exceptional people skills to effectively network and liaise with the military and golf communities as well as building strong relationships with our beneficiaries.
The successful candidates will have demonstrated previous experience of managing successful events at a variety of levels. Exceptional organisational and time management skills and the ability to multi–task and work remotely are also essential for the role as is the willingness to travel long distances with frequent overnight stops. It goes without saying that an interest in golf and knowledge of current military and/or defence recovery issues is desirable.
If you are up for a challenge and are keen to work in a dynamic and forward thinking organisation that provides life changing support to its beneficiaries then apply by submitting a CV and covering letter through http://goo.gl/l5Z6T5 highlighting how you meet the role criteria.
For an informal discussion please contact our Operations Manager Alex Woolston. The Closing Date for applications is 9am on Monday 16th March and interviews will be held at our head office on either Monday 30th March or Thursday 2nd April. These roles are also being advertised on CharityJob.co.uk and you can view the role profile here: http://www.oncoursefoundation.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Regional-Events-and-Employment-Manager-Role-Profile.pdf
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(Published 10th February 2015)
On Course Foundation has partnered with Tri Spirit Events, and we’re pleased to be able to offer places at the Brett Ashford Triathalon on June 14th. If you’re a keen tri-athlete, or would like to compete as part of a team, we’d love to have your help in raising vital funds for our cause. For more information on how to participate, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, tweet or call us.
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(Published 6th February 2015)
On Wednesday, our Founder John Simpson became the first patient in the UK to be fitted with new computer-controlled exoskeleton. The new leg brace, from Ottobock, has been launched in the UK to help people living with partial paralysis, spinal injury, post-stroke and post-polio syndrome walk naturally again. The device is the only exoskeleton of its kind; the carbon fibre brace uses a built-in microprocessor and sensors which allows the knee to control all aspects of the walking cycle and can be worn on either one or both legs.
“For as long as I can remember, I’ve had to walk with a locked-knee, which is awkward, cumbersome and puts great strain on my lower back,” explains John. “Over the years I tried new braces, supports and therapies, but nothing helped me walk and so I stuck with my original steel calipers. In all the years I’ve been wearing calipers, the most innovative development until now was the addition of Velcro, so this is a revolution. I can walk naturally again, without fear that my leg will give way, leading to a fall. I can walk downstairs with a bent knee and without fear as the brace provides support intuitively. It’s going to change my life”.
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(Published 29th January 2015)
Yesterday we launched the Ambassador Initiative, with over 20 Ambassadors in attendance. Although the weather was damp and dreary, spirits certainly weren’t, as staff congratulated the Ambassadors on their achievements to date, and encouraged them to keep their great efforts up. The Initiative aims to spread awareness of our cause, and boost engagement in military and fundraising communities. Stewart Harris, our Regional Ambassador from Rhyl who joined the On Course Foundation last year, was one of many who came to the event in Stratford upon Avon to meet with the other Ambassadors, and receive a token of thanks from Founder John Simpson. “A round of golf with three other people who have been through similar experiences has proven to be better therapy than any counselling session”, Stewart remarked yesterday. “The On Course Foundation has helped me become a better person on and off the course so I am very proud to represent them as one of their Ambassadors for Wales.”
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(Published 28th January 2015)
Today we proudly launched our Ambassador Initiative during a ceremony held at the Welcombe Hotel & Golf Resort, Stratford Upon Avon. The Ambassador Initiative aims to honour those Members who have given back to the charity, not only recognising their great work, but encouraging them to spread even more awareness of what we do and how we can help others. With a strong media presence, Founder John Simpson and Managing Director Steve Holt congratulated the Ambassadors on the work that they have done so far, and outlined our vision for the future. As Ambassadors, individuals will formally represent the On Course Foundation at fundraising events and golf days. Ambassadors will also become spokespeople for the charity sharing their story and widening awareness of how golf can help in the rehabilitation of current and ex Service Personnel.
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(Published 26th January 2015)
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