Equipment

October 23, 2014

Resize and Distribute Free Clubs

david-havensDavid Havens, founder of Spare for Change, is the PGA director of instruction at Ka’anapali Golf Courses in Lahaina, Hawaii.

David Havens on the importance of resizing and distributing free clubs:
My wife and I enjoy helping others. Being in the golf industry, I wanted to be able to help others in my field of business and so I began by recycling golf clubs in 2010. After making a set for a young girl and seeing how appreciative she was, I knew this was the right thing to do. She sent me a letter expressing her thanks and it was then that I realized the impact we could have on people’s lives. I feel very good about what I do, and I enjoy having the opportunity at Ka’anapali to put golf clubs into the hands of many players, be it underprivileged kids or adults looking to get into the game after retirement. When I give these players a set of clubs, they begin practicing with them and start to see the benefits of the game. They do not lay them in a corner of their garage, because they know how lucky they are to have them. I see these new golfers at the golf course playing and working on their game. We could not do this without the donation of clubs from golfers around the world. They send me old sets that they no longer use and make a positive impact on others. I not only distribute clubs in Hawaii, but I have reached out to golfers across the country. If they contact me in need of clubs, I make sure they get them. When players outgrow the clubs I send them, roughly 10 percent of them return them for a larger set, and then I give the smaller set to another player in need. We created a website, spareforchange.org, and hope to become a national brand in the near future.

David Havens on the business impact of resizing and distributing free clubs:
When you put a set of clubs in a player’s hands, their presence at the golf course increases. Since my wife and I began this operation, we have given out over 8,000 clubs. We still have 4,000 in inventory to give out. By introducing kids to the game, we also attract their parents, which creates more golfers and more folks coming to practice, eat at the facility and enjoying the course, and joining our Fit Club. Fit Club is a monthly fitness program, giving players the opportunity to pay a monthly fee and walk the golf course after 4 p.m. Since I began distributing clubs, I have noticed about a 500 round increase in the Fit Club, who play more frequently because they realize after playing almost daily, that they need some tweaking to specific aspects of their game. Often, since they are beginners, they seek golf instruction. In the past three to four years, I have seen a 30 percent increase in lessons, and a 50 percent increase last year alone.

If you would like to email the author of this Best Practice directly, please emaildhavens@kaanapaligolfcourses.com

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