As an American living in Colombia, South America, Tony Ciabattoni’s world has changed dramatically. Growing up learning to love and appreciate the sport of golf, he now finds himself in a metropolitan area of 1.5 million people with only two private golf courses and absolutely no place for the average citizen, especially children, to learn and play. Now he is helping to make his new community a better — and more fun — place, especially for the kids.
“I grew up playing public golf, and never dreamed that there were places with no public golf courses,” said Tony. “It became my DREAM that I could positively affect the lives of an entire metropolitan area.”
Tony and his wife, Sandra Gonzalez, purchased 12 acres of land with their life savings and are now raising money to build a one-of-a-kind facility.
“The money that I spent buying the land was more than I expected, but upon signing the deed, I was the complete opposite of nervous. It appeared that this new dream was actually possible,” wrote Tony in his blog.
The Right to Play program will be similar in many respects to The FirstTee project, which has proven to be a worthwhile endeavor that introduces golf to underprivileged kids.
It’s not just about golf. Giving kids the right to play is certainly the goal of FirstTee but the greater well-being of the entire community is really what their foundation is all about. Once the facility opens, all profits will go towards buying books and computers for local schools as well as sending as many kids to school whose families currently cannot afford the tuition.
Part of the facility will be totally free for kids: a four hole pitch & putt course where kids can learn and play at no cost.
To read more about the project, visit www.therighttoplay.com.