In an effort to raise $5 million for charity, long-standing SANTA Charity Golf Tournament have ‘upped’ their game this year with well over $1-million in prizes.
In addition to the coveted Facey Cup, there are numerous prizes for participating golfers, not least of which are the two “Hole-in-One” prizes: a new VW Tiguan SUV (at the 15th hole), and a Travel and Vacation package, valued at over $1 million (at the 2nd hole).
During the recent launch, Constant Spring Golf Club President Nigel Davy explained that SANTA, an acronym for ‘Seeing A Need, Taking Action,’ is primarily the brainchild of golfer and club member Frank Jackson.
In 2001, Jackson, with a few colleagues, conceived the idea of giving back to the less fortunate in the community. Since then, SANTA has helped over 40 different charities, contributing over $40 million in money, time, equipment and materials.
The beneficiaries of this year’s SANTA charity golf event are the Boys’ Town Infant and Primary School, the Wortley Home, the Constant Spring Police Station and the nearby Lalyce Gray Basic School.
Speaking at the launch, Jamaica Golfers’ Association (JGA) President Peter Chin pointed out that the SANTA event is a significant part of a massive charitable contribution by golf to various causes, which he put at over $30 million annually.
With the appearance overhead of a ‘squadron’ of drones, the Friday evening launch event welcomed golfers, sponsors, media, and well-wishers to the clubhouse green, looking out at the newly built water- feature, the 18th hole and the St Andrew hills in the distance.
Executive director of the CB Facey Foundation, Brittany Singh-WIlliams, said: “The project, which the foundation has supported for four years running, embodies everything that we stand for.” She added that, “the organisation, which is also engaged in providing and sustaining art programmes in schools at the primary level, was keen to support SANTA with not just funds, but with time, energy and expertise.”
The weekend is all about tournament play, with Juniors (whose numbers are steadily growing, according to JGA president Peter Chin) teeing off yesterday, and the adults playing today, culminating in the grand prize-giving ceremony and after-party.
In addition to title sponsor CB Facey Foundation, Pan-Jamaican Investment Trust’s charity arm, SANTA is supported by Jamaica Broilers Group, The Gleaner, RJR Group, Walkers Wood, Hot Off The Press, BCIC, First Venture Ltd, Couples Resorts Jamaica, Pepsi/Gatorade, and The Joan Duncan Foundation, JPSCo, Supreme Ventures, CN Industries, Microlabs, and many more corporate sponsors.