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Make golf more inclusive, inner city charity says

Award-winning social mobility charity Urban Synergy has declared its support for golf as a youth sport, but believes it could do more to attract them.

“When we announced the Golf Day fundraiser last year, some supporters questioned whether the sport was diverse enough for us,” says Urban Synergy CEO and Founder Leila Thomas.

This year’s Urban Synergy Golf Day takes place at The Shire London, Barnet, North London on Thursday 16 May.

The Golf Day sees 10 young people from diverse ethnic backgrounds play on the fairways with business executives from some of the UK’s biggest companies.

Established in 2007, Urban Synergy has supported around 27,000 young people to reach their full potential by introducing them to relatable role models and providing them with access to mentors and preparation for further education, work, internships and apprenticeships.

“Last year, our young people secured valuable new contacts and opportunities while networking with Urban Synergy’s corporate partners.”

TEE TIME: Urban Synergy CEO and Founder Leila Thomas believes golf can be an important part of young people’s lives

Leila added that golf is a unique way of networking, team building and enjoying nature and fresh air, and helping young people learn about traditional business relationships – as well as golf.

In 2008, Urban Synergy worked with four 14-year-old boys who were part of the government’s London Challenge program – Gavin, Kofi, Chad and TJ. “Their teachers said they were smart, but at risk of being underachieved and excluded,” Leila said.

When we announced last year’s Golf Day fundraiser, some supporters questioned whether the sport was diverse enough for us

Leila Thomas, CEO and Founder of Urban Synergy

“My charity introduced them to role models, found them mentors and work experiences to help them learn and find work. Fast forward to today as he approaches his 30th birthday. All have graduated from college. “

Gavin is an SEO Manager at CMC Markets; Kofi is a Vice President at HSBC Innovation Banking, Chad is an Fx Editor/Sound Designer, and TJ is a Relationship Manager (Financial Markets) at Transaction Network Services.

“These are the kind of people golf courses could miss if they don’t diversify. It’s time for golf to do more to attract people from all walks of life even sooner.”

On the big day, boxing legend John Conteh will captain a team, for Falco Construction Limited, alongside players from the London Stock Exchange Group, FTI Consulting, UK Power Networks, Willis Tower Watson and SQS.