Junior organiser Barry named Volunteer of the Year

Barry Sears’ devotion to helping others at Faversham Golf Club has earned him the title as England Golf’s Volunteer of the Year.

Barry is a mainstay at the Kent club and is now totally immersed in the role of junior organiser having initially agreed to lend a helping hand as an ‘interim’ volunteer.

Five years on, Barry is still in the temporary role! In fact, he is now a key factor in driving participation among juniors and has a real knack of helping beginners fall in love with the game at an early age.

From a total of five juniors when Barry started his work, the club now has a thriving section with more than 70 boys and girls actively engaged as members.

With Barry’s perseverance, the club now runs regular Sunday afternoon meets for juniors without the pressure of more experienced players hurrying them along.

The club has introduced a full set of blue tees for younger players allowing them to play a shorter version of the full course.

A link with local schools has also been established thanks to Barry’s hard work and regular taster sessions are introducing more and more youngsters to the sport.

Even a serious adductor injury which left Barry struggling to walk in 2019 and into 2020 has not diminished his appetite to serve as junior organiser.

Barry has also leant his knowledge and expertise to helping the county develop its grassroots golf strategy and take his skills to a wider audience in the south-east.