Every summer, Youth First “stuffs a Caddy” with school supplies that later are distributed to Southwest Indiana children and families in need.
On Friday, Youth First had its Christmas stocking stuffed with a $30,000 check presented to the Evansville-based nonprofit by the PGA Tour.
“Stuff a Caddy” is supported by the wives of Web.com Tour professional golfers who are in town for the United Leasing Championship, the tournament itself, the Evansville Teachers Federal Credit Union, and Kitch and Schreiber. With donations from community members, not only a Cadillac SRX but a Cadillac Escalade, provided by Romain Buick GMC Cadillac, are filled with the supplies.
The program has been so successful — along with the Old National Bank “Golf Gives Back” program that supports multiple charities — that, on Dec. 7,Youth First was voted the Web.com Tour’s “Charity of the Year,” topping nominees from 24 other events and earning the $30,000 donation.
“This will make a difference for a lot of kids and a lot of lives in our communities,” said Parri Black, Youth First’s president and CEO. “It will help us to support children, to support families, and to make a difference across the region.”
Youth First serves the counties of Vanderburgh, Warrick, Posey, Gibson, Daviess, Martin and Pike. It partners with 56 schools across the seven counties to provide 37 social workers who assess needs, develop and implement prevention plans, and connect students and their families to community resources. Youth First also offers after-school programs involving parents and caregivers to strengthen families.
“They do great things,” said Ron Romain, the CEO of United Companies. “Our goal in establishing the golf tournament was to give back to the community, and Youth First is a great example of a deserving organization benefiting from our programs.”
The ULC has brought golfers from the Web.com Tour — many of whom have gone on to success on the PGA Tour — to Victoria National Golf Club for the past five years. The sixth tournament is scheduled for April 17-23, 2017.
In that time, $870,000 has been raised for local charities — Friday’s award pushes the number above $900,000 — including $270,000 from the 2016 event.
“What United Leasing does, along with the Evansville Sports Corp. and Old National and all the other sponsors, is truly making a difference for a lot of non-profits and a lot of families that they serve,” said Black, whose group’s stated goal is to strengthen families. “It’s a wonderful event for this community.”