Struggling Irish golf clubs have been given a funding boost to help get them back on their feet after a disastrous 2020. The R&A has committed over €7million in funding to its associations and affiliated body of which over €600,00 will be channelled to golf clubs in Ireland - up to a maximum of €10,000 per club.
A Golf Ireland spokesperson explained: "Over the past number of months we have been lobbying on behalf of golf clubs with governing bodies including The R&A, Sport Ireland and Sport Northern Ireland to examine what support packages can be put in place to assist clubs during this difficult time.
"With the global pandemic leading to widespread temporary course closures and drastic reductions in domestic and international travel, many golf clubs and facilities are facing serious financial difficulties. The fund is being provided to help The R&A’s affiliated national associations to support those clubs and facilities, although some of the money may be used for other activities key to the future health of the sport."
Golf Ireland will administer a funding package of €610,000, which aims to deliver immediate funding to golf clubs meeting specific criteria to a maximum grant of €10,000.
One key condition of receiving the funding regards to the Women in Golf Charter. Funded clubs must become a Women in Golf Charter signatory within three months of receiving the funding and commit to achieving a number of Bronze, Silver, and Gold commitments in the areas of visibility, governance, participation, culture, and gender balance within a set timeframe.
Clubs must also demonstrate a clear financial need for the grant as a result of the pandemic and it is expected that the club Management Committee has already put in place all cost-saving measures and reductions where possible to address the current crisis.
Applications are open until September 4th, with successful clubs receiving their grants before the end of September.
Additionally, for clubs in the Republic of Ireland, the revised Restart Grant Plus Scheme means support will now be provided for enterprises that could not access the original government grant scheme.