I hope that this message finds you, your family and loved ones healthy and safe. As our community works together to prevent the spread of COVID-19, we want to reach out to you, our valued donors and supporters, to provide an update on how the organization has adjusted so that our robust programming schedule continues in the online world we’re now operating in.
Following Governor Wolf’s stay at home orders, First Tee of Greater Philadelphia postponed all spring programming, activities and fundraising events. In addition, both Walnut Lane and John F. Byrne Golf Club’s suspended play. Even though we had over 300 participants registered for our Spring programs and thousands more slated to participate in our National School Program initiatives, we had to put everything on hold. We know our students were eager to get started, as were our coaches and volunteers! So, our dedicated staff worked incredibly hard to create engaging and innovative opportunities, with daily ‘virtual’ programming for all participants. Last week we had a total reach of almost 10,000.
Over the past few years, the Board of Directors and I have worked hard to build up our Cash Reserve fund as an ‘insurance policy’ for unforeseen circumstances. The current crisis is far worse financially than we could have ever imagined and has dramatically stalled our $1 million annual fundraising efforts. As a result, we have cut all budgeted expenses for the next 90 days by 60%. On the positive side, our cash reserve supplemented with help from the Cares Act legislation will help us continue operations until the environment normalizes.
We look forward to keeping you informed about how we are continuing to impact the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values, and promote healthy choices, through the game of golf. Your dedication makes it possible for us to positively influence young people within our community. We remain committed to serving our participants and their families throughout this unprecedented time. I sincerely thank you for making everything we do possible and for helping to make the world a better place.