MILWAUKEE – Statistics from the PGA Tour of America show that less than 20% of golfers in the US are minorities. One Wisconsin organization is trying to change that.
We Black We Golf is a social organization that uses the game of golf to build a community.
Richard Badger is the director of the WBWG. They got the use of the game of golf to improve personal and professional development through networking and philanthropy.
Badger said the goal is to increase diversity in the game among Black and Brown people.
“Golf really is open to everybody, it should be considered all inclusive,” he said. “There’s a history and a stigma that goes along with golf that it really has been a hyper-segregated game.”
The name was created by WBWG golf mentor Martin Marshall. Badger got the idea stemmed from an experience Marshall had on a local golf course when he felt he was not part of an inclusive environment for people of color.
While the focus is on getting people of color out on the course, the WBWG is open to all Races, genders and classes of people.
“We’re under two-years-old and, within that two years …, we’re just under 2,000 members,” said Badger. “We put golf clubs in over 500 people’s hands.”
They got the largest growing demographic has been women, including golfers like Qatar Key.
Key said she was never expected to fall in love with the game.
“It’s not like football, not like basketball where sometimes you’re limited by your age and gender,” said Key. “This game allows you to go far beyond.
She values the relationships she’s built since joining and said anyone can do it.
“It gives you a chance to learn golf in a safe space,” said Key. “People are teaching you, critiquing you and improving your game.”
She’s excited about more people possibly joining the fun this summer.
“I can’t wait to get the people back together in a group and start fellowshipping again so that we can enjoy each other’s company and also enjoy what it means to introduce the game to a new generation into new people,” said Key.
Badger has seen how this sport has been able to break barriers and bring people a sense of family and fun. He is anticipating more action for as long as Mother Nature allows.
“We’re targeting those beginners,” said Badger. “We aren’t looking for people to become competitive right away. We just want to be able to put Clubs in your hands and introduce you to the game in a way that’s going to be fun, social and inexpensive, but you still get the quality of the training. ”
To learn more about WBWG and get involved, click here.