#GameON Autism Golf Program

The UNESCO Chair launched the #LetsInclusivizeGolf project and the “Ernie Els #GameON Autism”- programme in Ireland with the support of Liam Duggan, PGA Advanced Professional at LDgolf, on the 10th of February 2016.

The main goals are:

  • To inclusivize the golf sector and mainstream diversity.
  • To enthuse and support golf club owners, managers, training organisations, instructors and golf professionals about working with people with disabilities.
  • To provide tailored training and raise awareness for inclusion.
  • To enlarge opportunities in sport for people with disabilities thriving towards an inclusive society.

Starting off with a training day of the Ernie Els #GameON Autism”-Programme conducted by Jennifer Hong, #GameON Autism Sports Coordinator, USA, the initiative kicks off to inclusivize the golf sector in Ireland. Golf is very popular in Ireland. To open golf to people with disabilities means to make golf more accessible. Two master students from the UNESCO Chair will support the initiative with their research.  The two research topics are:

  1. Golf-Access for All? An analysis of golf from a universal access perspective, towards the development of a functional map for best policy and practice. – Dominique Wehrcamp
  2. An Evaluation of the Ernie Els #GameON Autism Golf Programme – Jerrome Suganthy Selvaraj

How did it all start?

LDgolf is the leading deliverer of golf in the school environment in Ireland, delivering programmes to over 2,500 children per week. In doing so, Liam became acutely aware of how inclusive the game was in offering opportunities to children with disability to engage in a sport on their terms.

As a First Tee Ireland instructor, Liam came in contact with Jack Barrett, development director of the First Tee Palm Beach County & lead coach instructor with the #GameOn Autism programme. Liam visited the Els Foundation in December 2014 and subsequently put the structures in place to bring the UNESCO Chair & the Els Foundation together to coordinate the delivery of the Els programme in Ireland.


Ernie Els Foundation #GameON Autism”-

Liam Duggan, PGA Advanced Professional at LDgolf