Els for Autism
#GameON Program

First Tee – Upstate South Carolina is excited to launch the Els for Autism #GameON programming in 2020! Partnering with Upstate-Carolina Adaptive Golf, we are expanding our overall program reach to those with cognitive challenges and children affected by autism spectrum disorder, which affects 1 in 59 children living in the United States.

The Ernie Els #GameON Autism™ Golf program is infused with evidence-based practices for teaching golf to people with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Participants learn golf skills while practicing specific autism learning concepts, including communication, emotional regulation, motor, and social skills. The goal of the program is for participants to achieve their individual golf successes, build confidence and self-esteem, in a fun, welcoming and supportive environment.

We hosted an amazing training for local coaches with a National Trainer from the Els for Autism Foundation on February 8th, 2020 at Willow Creek. We had 21 coaches trained on how to implement the curriculum. After the training we braved the snow and held our first #GameON Clinic with 12 young people on the spectrum (picture will be posted soon).

Els for Autism #GameON Programming in the News

If you or your company is interested in helping to grow this program financially, please click here to donate or contact Michael Pius, PGA Executive Director at (864)268-3309 or mpius@thefirstteeupstate.org.

Registration for three community clinics is now open for all children with physical and cognitive challenges, as well as for their siblings. The clinic is available for ages 6-17 years with some exceptions for younger siblings. Please complete the form below to register for one, or all three, of the clinics and there is a minimal fee for each clinic. Contact Laura Maurer at lmaurer@thefirstteeupstate.org with any questions.

Clinic Information:
Sunday, July 26th
4:30PM to 5:30PM
Willow Creek Golf Club

Saturday, August 8th
9AM to 10AM
Legacy Pines Golf Club

Thursday, August 27th
6PM to 7PM
Carolina Club at Botany