Golf New Zealand believes that golf can be the most inclusive and accessible game for everyone in New Zealand.

Golf offers a unique range of benefits, including spending time with friends and family, connecting with nature, and a wide range of health and wellbeing outcomes. Golf’s handicap system allows individuals to play recreationally and compete equitably regardless of age, gender or ability. Further, the diverse range of golf courses, facilities, and flexibility in playing formats means there is truly something for everyone.

Despite this, a disproportionate number of women and girls play, compete, and work in the game.

Our research highlights:

·21 percent of adult club members are women

·17 percent of junior club members are girls

·29 percent of the Golf Managers Association of New Zealand (GMANZ) members are women

·18 percent of the Professional Golfers Association of New Zealand (PGANZ) members are women

·1 percent of the New Zealand Golf Course Superintendents Association are women

Golf New Zealand Chief Executive Dean Murphy says: "My ambition in life is to have my two girls beat me in golf. For golf to be welcoming for women and girls, our sector's environment needs to look a little different than it does now. The golf club I imagine for my daughters is a welcoming environment full of other young girls who are embraced as a core part of the club. I think the sector has a little way to go until we get there.”

In 2021, Golf New Zealand established a Women and Girls National Advisory Group. The group included representatives from Golf New Zealand, PGA of New Zealand, GMA of New Zealand, Sport New Zealand, and a range of General Managers and PGA Professionals from the sector. Discussions considered a wide variety of insights such as international research, national insights, the New Zealand Government's Women and Girls in Sport and Active Recreation Strategy, together with the voice of the participants. The group brought together a diverse range of perspectives, ideas, and experiences to create a plan for women and girls in golf called Our Ambition.

It is our ambition that women and girls are welcomed, valued, and thriving in golf.

Golf New Zealand Diversity and Inclusion Manager Emily Davidson says: "We are so proud of golf's collaborative efforts so far, particularly on initiatives such as She Loves Golf, however, we also recognise more focus is required to make long-term systemic change, complement our ongoing Mahi and lay solid foundations for the next generation of women and girls."

Golf New Zealand's Ambition for women and girls aims to inspire the golf sector to be collectively responsible for outcomes that will contribute towards a more inclusive culture for women and girls in golf. Over 100 organisations in the golf industry have already shared and committed to this ambition, with many more to come.

Russley Golf Club is a club that shares Our Ambition with PGA Professional Jess Reid, saying: "The game has changed a considerable amount over the past few years. I am incredibly grateful and proud that Golf New Zealand has worked hard with its inclusive and modern initiatives to make the game more appealing and flexible for women and girls today. This ambition is another excellent step towards attracting more and more females into the game and providing the support platform for all female players, professionals, volunteers, and clubs that contribute their time and passion to the sport. An exciting and welcoming future is ahead for our wahine!"

Our Ambition for women and girls is not in isolation; it is an essential component of a more comprehensive commitment to inclusion detailed in our Inclusion Charter. The charter also identifies a focus on ethnicity and culture, disabled people, and the LGBTQIA+ community. Additionally, Our Ambition contributes towards our commitment to The R&A’s Women in Golf Charter and is aligned with Sport New Zealand’s Strategy for Women and Girls in Sport and Active Recreation, which strives to achieve equity for all women and girls in sport.

Sport New Zealand Chief Executive Raelene Castle says: "I would like to acknowledge Sport NZ's support for Golf New Zealand's ambition to ensure women and girls are welcomed, valued, and thriving in golf. We see this as a continuation of your organisation's excellent work over recent years, including programmes such as She Loves Golf to break down barriers and strengthen female participation in your sport. Congratulations to you and your team."

Change starts with a commitment to take action, and we are excited to work together with everyone in the golf sector to share Our Ambition, to ensure women and girls are welcomed, valued, and thriving in golf.

View Our Ambition HERE