The Valspar Championship presented by BB&T continues its Community Drivers Program in December with a donation of $24,500 to The First Tee of Clearwater.
The First Tee of Clearwater is one of three programs operated by the Chi Chi Rodriguez Youth Foundation. This program has a 10-week Summer Camp, daily certification classes and trains local elementary PE teachers to implement its National School Program.
Coupled with other programs from last March’s tournament, including a raffle and pro-am, the Valspar Championship has now generated a total of more than $37,000 to The First Tee of Clearwater/Chi Chi Rodriguez Youth Foundation in 2014.
The Chi Chi Rodriguez Youth Foundation has been helping thousands of local children since 1979. Located on McMullen Booth Road in north Clearwater, the Foundation has been a chapter with PGA TOUR’s The First Tee National Program since 2004, but was essentially the precursor to The First Tee’s concept. The Foundation also collaborates with the Pinellas County School District on a public school for at risk students and the Boys & Girls Club of the Suncoast serving more than 1,500 children annually.
“We are excited to add The First Tee of Clearwater to our list of Community Drivers,” says Tracy West, Tournament Director of the Valspar Championship. “It is a passionate group that does a great job of enhancing the lives of so many area children.”
“Valspar is leading a renaissance of the Innisbrook PGATOUR tournament and its charitable contributions to the community. The Chi Chi Foundation is proud to be a partner in the process,” says Tom James, Chairman of the Foundation’s Board.
Executive Director Cary Stiff reports that the contribution will allow continued growth in the quality of programs by keeping participant to coach ratios low and training more parents and volunteers to be mentors. Currently 25 volunteers assist throughout the year and eleven of those have been certified as The First Tee Assistant Coaches.
Six times each year, the Valspar Championship, in conjunction with the Tampa Bay Times, identifies an area organization or individual that is doing outstanding charity work in the Tampa Bay area – a leading driver for a better community.
Each Community Driver receives a cash donation of at least $20,000. In addition, Valspar donates the paint and tournament volunteers provide the personnel for a painting project that benefits the group or individual selected.
In addition, each Community Driver will be recognized in a quarter-page advertisement in the Tampa Bay Times.