How the PGA Tour Supports More Than 3,000 Nonprofit Organizations

An image of three attendees of the Women’s Day Event stuffing Kindergarten Readiness Backpacks.

An image of three attendees of the Women’s Day Event stuffing Kindergarten Readiness Backpacks.

This past January marked the 52nd year that the Farmers Insurance Open was played at the Torrey Pines Golf Course in San Diego, California. This annual golf tournament brings in some of the largest golf names and attracts over 100,000 spectators. The PGA tour, its players, and the tournaments support more than 3,000 nonprofit organizations in numerous areas of their communities including youth, military, health, environment, education, and disaster relief. The PGA tour is a unique sporting event in the way that it runs similar to a nonprofit: it relies on volunteer support to run most aspects of the event and it is designed to donate 100% of the proceeds. Up through 2018, the PGA tour has generated $2.65 billion for charity, with that number steadily climbing.

Champions for Youth is the primary charitable program of the Century Club of San Diego, which is the administrative organization behind the Farmers Insurance Open. This year, Words Alive was one of the 10 chosen organizations in San Diego to participate in the Champions for Youth program. This means that not only did we embark on our most successful peer-to-peer fundraising campaign to date (our Board, staff, and volunteers collectively raised over $20,000!), we also had the opportunity to earn bonus funds from a pool of $260,000. In addition, we were able to participate in the Women’s Day Event, Community Day, and we hosted a special Read Aloud session with students from the Doris Miller Elementary School. Participating in these events allowed us to reach out to and interact with members of the community that we haven’t previously been able to.

An image of one of our Read Aloud students from Doris Day Elementary holding up a piece of paper that says “love.”

An image of one of our Read Aloud students from Doris Day Elementary holding up a piece of paper that says “love.”

For the Women’s Day Event, Farmers Insurance employees assisted us in putting together 1,000 Kindergarten Readiness backpacks for the children in our Family Literacy Program. These backpacks included the necessary school supplies for our littlest learners as they enter kindergarten, as well as a brand new book to start building the children’s home library. The event also brought together women in leadership positions across different sectors to discuss the importance of mentorship and their success.

Thanks to our community of supporters and the staff and volunteers who helped us fundraise, Words Alive was able to exceed our goal of raising $60,000. These generous donations will allow us to serve more than 300 students and families this year. Your belief and dedication to building communities who value reading is what enables us to continue giving back to the children and families of San Diego.

If you would like to learn more about Words Alive or keep your eye out for any other upcoming fundraisers, click here.

Preventing the Summer Slide

Words Alive was honored to have been a partner in the Readers in the Heights program this summer alongside Community Housing Works, San Diego Workforce Partnership, San Diego County Office of Education, San Diego Council on Literacy, City Heights Public Library, and United Way San Diego. Readers in the Heights was a pilot program aiming to prevent summer slide by aligning and leveraging existing resources to bring summer learning opportunities to the City Heights Community Development Corporation (CHCDC). This year there were 51 children enrolled in the program and 36 children with perfect attendance. The diverse demographics of the children involved in the program is reflected in the varied language spoken at home. Families reported Somali, Amharic, Spanish, Arabic, Kizigua, or Haitian Creole as their primary language spoken at home. During the program the children had the opportunity to take field trips to the library, be read aloud to, create arts and crafts and make new friends. 

Words Alive modeled our Small Group session during the Readers in the Heights program and providing volunteers to read preassigned books to the children followed by a small group book discussion. During the small group, children are divided into groups of 4 and have the opportunity to look more closely at the book. The Words Alive volunteers ask questions that encourage participation and analytical thought while providing a space for every child to share their opinions about the story. The Readers in the Heights facilitators have noticed and reported the positive impact of the program, “The kids look forward to the reading components as the ‘special part’ of the program”. 

After 4 weeks of hard work and fun the participating families graduated from the program. Graduation day celebrated the families for their dedication and time they have invested in their children’s education. We wanted families to walk away feeling appreciated, empowered, and fulfilled.