Relief Funds Support Caddies Affected by COVID-19
Updated: Apr 23
The global pandemic of COVID-19 is rocking the world as we know it, and the entire golf industry is getting hit hard. Many golf courses are closed either due to governmental regulations, or by their own hand, to help minimize the spread of the virus. Caddies and thousands of other golf course staff are out of work. In response, many clubs have set up GoFundMe campaigns to help raise money to support their staff during this period of uncertainty.
Larry David, the creator of Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm—also a member at Riviera—was among the first to get this trend rolling. On March 21, Larry set up a GoFundMe with the goal of reaching $150K to help caddies out at his famed country club. Currently, they have surpassed their goal and raised $158K, and as of April 14 funds are being distributed to caddies.
Pinehurst put together an auction that raised $294K that will go directly toward the Pinehurst Employee Relief Fund, which will assist hotel and restaurant workers, caddies, and hundreds of others who have been hurt by the pandemic.
Bandon Dunes and Kiawah Island have followed in the footsteps of Larry David and Riviera in setting up GoFundMe accounts for their caddies and staff as well. Bandon posted their goal as just $1, leaving it up to the people to see how much money they could raise to support their caddies. So far, more than $161K has been raised. While that number may be a large sum of money, the caddie program at Bandon has 350 Bandits in the shack. Break it down, and that only gives each caddie $460. There’s much more work to be done.
Carne Golf Links is tucked away on the rugged west coast of Ireland, and they are being hurt by this as well. Gerry Maguire, the chairman of Carne, wrote an emotional diary entry on how COVID-19 has impacted the club and himself. I highly recommend listening to the latest episode of The Golfers Journal podcast to hear the words from Gerry himself. If you can swing it, consider buying something from the course’s online shop.
We put together a list of links for different relief efforts for golf courses. If you know of more, please comment on this post, or get at us on social media and we’ll post it. Hopefully this can create more awareness for these relief funds and help get golf courses hitting the ground running when the fog lifts. If you have the means, please consider donating to one of these funds.
Let’s do this together, Bandits. Keep those chins high.
Golf Course, Caddie, and Staff Relief Funds:
Bandon Dunes, Bandon, OR https://www.gofundme.com/f/q33nw-bandon-caddie-relief-fund
Carne Links, IRL http://www.carnegolflinks.com/golf/ecom_v2/ecom.php, https://www.golfersjournal.com/podcast/episode-53-pandemic-diary/ (podcast)
Cullen Links, UK https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/cullen-links
ETCA (European Tour Caddie Association) https://www.gofundme.com/f/euro-caddies
Kiawah Island, Kiawah, SC https://www.gofundme.com/f/ocean-course-caddie-relief-fund
The Olympic Club, San Francisco, CA https://www.gofundme.com/f/caddie-support
Plainfield CC, Edison, NJ https://www.gofundme.com/f/pcc-caddie-relief-fund-covid19-response
Riviera, Los Angeles, CA https://www.gofundme.com/f/riviera-caddy-fund
St. Andrews, UK https://www.gofundme.com/f/st-andrews-caddies