Governor Ducey Announces $375,000 to Support After-School Programs

PHOENIX — Governor Doug Ducey today announced $375,000 for after-school programs that help promote healthy choices and encourage social engagement among kids of rural areas and underserved communities.

“Organizations like First Tee help our state build new safety nets to support vulnerable kids and families,” said Governor Ducey. “Remaining active, fostering social relationships and learning new skills are great ways Arizona kids can prepare for their futures and lead healthy lives. In Arizona, we will continue to support kids in need — and I thank the team at First Tee for all they do.”

The Tee Up Healthy Students Program utilizes golf to provide educational programs that build character, instill values and promote healthy choices. The Governor’s investment of federal funding will help fund a virtual curriculum, sports equipment, potential transportation support and other program needs in Title 1 schools, benefiting students and families in need.

First Tee partners with organizations across Arizona to utilize golf to help more than 150,000 kids every year gain social, recreational and personal skills. While First Tee currently works with 15 school districts throughout Maricopa County, the program’s expansion will create significant program growth opportunities in areas like south Phoenix, other parts of the Valley and rural communities.

“We’re grateful to Governor Ducey for supporting First Tee and our efforts to help Arizona’s children remain active and teach them important values like honesty and sportsmanship,” said Board Chair of First Tee-Phoenix Herman Lewkowitz. “The Tee Up Healthy Students Program will ensure more kids in need have the opportunity to get fresh air, move around and connect with others so they become well-rounded and are prepared for their future educational and professional endeavors. We look forward to working with community and school leaders to expand this important program.”

First Tee will work with Journeyage, a personalized learning management system, as part of the expansion to reach more vulnerable students by crafting virtual courses to ensure teachers, coaches and nonprofit partners are well-equipped to deliver the golf curriculum.

On August 17, Governor Ducey announced $64.9 million in state and federal funding for programs that improve K-12 literacy, support adult education and expand teacher professional development.

On October 20, Governor Ducey attended the Pay It Forward Car Wash, a week-long televised event that raises money for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona.

On November 8, Governor Ducey announced $1 million to support the Arizona Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs in its efforts to help kids recover from the social and emotional implications of the COVID-19 pandemic.

On November 9, Governor Ducey announced an investment of $1.25 million for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona and Black Mothers Forum to support mentorship programs for at-risk youth and training programs for parents of underrepresented families.