Dublin Villager

Presidents Cup

Charities are victors thanks to players' donations

Nationwide Children's, First Tee among those to benefit

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The 24 players taking a swing at Presidents Cup victory won't take home a paycheck from the competition.

Money generated at the international golf contest that runs through Sunday, Oct. 6, at the Muirfield Village Golf Club will go to charities around the world and a few locally.

Presidents Cup Director Matt Kamienski said all PGA events are nonprofit events.

"They are held and hosted to support local communities," he said.

The 2011 Presidents Cup donated $4.5 million to nonprofits, and over the years more than 425 charities in 16 different countries have benefited, Kamienski said.

Money made at the Presidents Cup is divided among the players, who choose charities that will receive donations. Tiger Woods has a foundation that gives out scholarships, said Laura Neal, vice president of communications for the PGA, and Fred Couples has 10 foundations among which he's divided his money.

But some money will stay local, as Nationwide Children's Hospital and First Tee Central Ohio are two beneficiaries.

"Nationwide Children's Hospital is long-standing in the community and their partnership with the Memorial (Tournament) is well-known," Kamienski said, noting that Muirfield designer Jack Nicklaus supports it as well.

Nationwide Children's Hospital will receive proceeds from the opening ceremony held at Columbus Commons Oct. 2. The event, which featured a concert with Rascal Flatts, sold out in two weeks, Neal said.

Nationwide Children's also will receive money from concession stands at the Presidents Cup as volunteers man the stations.

"We benefit on two levels: First (in) financial support. Every gift truly does matter to us and it will make a big difference for our families," said Niki Schafer, vice president of annual giving for the Nationwide Children's Hospital Foundation. "The Presidents Cup will also elevate our hospital on a national stage. The national visibility we receive is a significant benefit for us."

The money from the Presidents Cup will go to areas of greatest need at Nationwide Children's Hospital: uninsured or underinsured patients and pediatric research.

"We have a mission of not turning anyone away for care, whether they can pay or not," Schafer said.

First Tee Central Ohio will take financial proceeds from the rental of Fan Vision, Neal said. The small hand-held computers that can be rented at the Presidents Cup give updates to fans. Presidents Cup partner CitiBank generates the funds.

First Tee is a PGA tour partner, Kamienski said, and benefits at many events.

First Tee Central Ohio works to enrich the lives of children locally by using golf to teach life skills and reaches out to children who would not otherwise afford the game. The nonprofit has six levels for children ages 6-18 that teach qualities such as self management, interpersonal skills, motivation and goal setting.

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