The USGA and the National Alliance for Accessible Golf (National Alliance) have provided a $12,500 grant to the I Got This Foundation, which was founded by Amy Bockerstette in 2019 to promote golf instruction and playing opportunities for people with Down syndrome and other intellectual disabilities.
Through the I Got This Foundation, Bockerstette, a collegiate golfer and advocate for individuals with disabilities, is joining her family in paving the way for intellectually disabled golfers to compete in leagues, join high school teams and earn college athletic scholarships.
This grant will be earmarked toward the I Got This Foundation's newest initiative: a golf academy for people with intellectual disabilities. The I Got This Foundation Golf Academy began on April 6 and is providing instruction and playing opportunities for individuals with intellectual disabilities from One Step Beyond and Gigi’s Playhouse of Phoenix. The academy will run through May 30 at two host golf courses in Arizona: Palmbrook Country Club in Sun City and Paradise Valley Golf Course in Phoenix.
“The efforts of Amy and the I Got This Foundation to create a more inclusive and welcoming game will have a lasting impact,” said Mike Davis, CEO of the USGA. “We proudly consider her part of the USGA family and continue to be inspired by her attitude and determination.”
Bockerstette is a Special Olympics athlete in golf, swimming and volleyball, an LPGA-USGA Girls Golf alumna, and was recently appointed to a two-year term on the President’s Council on Sports, Fitness & Nutrition. At the 2019 Waste Management Phoenix Open, representing Special Olympics Arizona, Amy played the 16th hole at TPC Scottsdale with Gary Woodland and playing partner Matt Kuchar during a practice round. As Amy surveyed her 10-foot putt for par, Woodland asked if she needed help lining it up, to which Amy famously replied, “I got this!” The video capturing this moment and her successful putt is the most viewed video in PGA Tour history. Four months later, Woodland won the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach and credited Amy and her attitude as inspiration for his victory.
"The I Got This Foundation is honored to receive this grant from the National Alliance for Accessible Golf,” said Lindsey Corbin, Foundation president and Amy’s sister. “The I Got This Golf Academy furthers our vision of inclusion for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and, at the same time, grows the game of golf. We are grateful for the support of the National Alliance and the USGA.”
“I am so excited that we can help more people learn to play golf,” said Amy Bockerstette. “I love it!”
The grant furthers the USGA’s mission to champion and advance the game. Since 1997, the USGA has invested more than $33 million in The First Tee, LPGA-USGA Girls Golf, and Drive, Chip & Putt to provide greater access to golf for juniors and cultivate a lifelong passion for the game. In 2018, the USGA announced plans for a championship for players with disabilities, and additional details will be announced in the year ahead.
“The National Alliance is excited to work with the I Got This Foundation to expand opportunities for individuals with disabilities in Arizona to play the game of golf,” said Justin Apel, president of the National Alliance. “Participants will become more actively engaged in the social fabric of their community and derive health benefits that improve their quality of life.”
Since 2010, the USGA has provided more than $940,000 in grants through the National Alliance to support accessible golf programs, including Els for Autism, The Turn, United Cerebral Palsy Empowered Through Golf, The Children’s Course, Freedom Golf Association, No Restrictions Golf Association, Special Olympics, and many more.