Although "golf" is VGP's middle name, the organization's primary mission is to foster the physical and mental wellbeing of the military veterans it serves.

 

Put simply, VGP's priorities for its members are, in order: food, shelter, transportation, and, of course, referrals for such medical and psychiatric services as they may need.

 

The veterans' needs are assessed organically through the medium of the game of golf. Members' needs and desires emerge in this program through stress-free fellowship as they learn the rules, etiquette and techniques of golf. There are no charges for participants, who are coached by a staff of volunteers and, in many cases, provided the equipment they need. 

 

As the veterans reveal their challenges, the program provides for their physical requirements and refers them as needed to the wide variety of counseling and advising services available in the Sacramento area.  VGP has provided everything from groceries to tableware to furniture for veterans with short-term struggles. In more pressing cases, the program has provided bridge financing to cover rent or cleaning deposits for vets moving into safe housing, and it has provided reliable cars for vets needing transportation to work or college.

 

Ultimately, VGP's goal is to move veterans with PTSD and other service-related challenges from preoccupation and depression into optimism and achievement. 

 The Veterans Golf Program currently serves approximately 100 men and women veterans of the United States armed forces. The program provides golf equipment, including golf bags, clubs, balls, and clothing, frequently through the generosity of golf equipment companies and local golfers. Mather Golf Course in Rancho Cordova is VGP's host, where the general manager has provided use of the course's facilities, range balls for our participants and occasional free golf.

 

A major VGP fund-raiser is an annual, nine-hole golf tournament, held in October. In discussions with VGP's veterans it was decided that some of the funds raised should help support the Mather VA Hospital Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Rehabilitation Unit.

 

You may contact:  

Joe Neff, Director VGP at veteransgolfprogram@gmail.com

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