Darren Douma Interview

What does it mean to you to be appointed Captain / Vice Captain of the 2019 Vision Cup ?

To be a part of the Vision Cup and to be a vice-captain is very special and an honor.  The Vision Cup is a very special event in that its “Ryder Cup” for the Blind and features  the best blind and partially-sighted golfers in the World.  To have the opportunity to attend, captain and participate in the 2019 Vision Cup is extremely exciting.  AS the previous host of the Vision Cup, I look forward to experiencing Ireland and all the exciting times our hosts will be providing us.

Tell me why playing golf is important to you ?

Golf has been  my entire life.  Started playing golf at the age of 10. and also worked in the golf service industry for 2o years.  Even after starting to lose vision, golf was still a positive part of my life, providing a great outlet.   In golf,  Its “YOU” versus NATURE” and the “GOLF COURSE”.   Golf is a sport where you challenge yourself and your ability to determine an individual outcome, while also sharing the experience and camaraderie with others. Golf makes me better person on and off the golf course, and leads me to my overall belief, “Ability over Disability”

What is your national association doing to promote the inclusion of young people in blind golf ?

Blind Golf Canada was set up as a national association in 2012.  One of our  major priorities   when forming was to deliver awareness and information as well as to promote blind golf to our blind and partially-sighted youth in Canada. We also partner annually with CNIB, our national association for the blind  and with Lions Clubs from across Canada. In our annual marketing and financial appeal to Lions Clubs, its our hope that we can raise the awareness and promote the availability of teaching and instruction of blind golf for Canada’s visually-impaired youth.

In addition, all our regional blind golf associations in Canada work with and promote blind golf within their respective blind sports associations.  With all of these combined marketing and communication avenues, we hope to attract many youth to participate in blind golf in the very near future.

What excites you about the VSI Inclusion Games, and the role that the Vision Cup has to play to promote this ?

The Vision Cup features and promotes the best blind and partially-sighted golfers in the World so this should inspire and encourage youth to want to participate in blind golf.  Additionally, The VSI Inclusion Games will provide an exciting opportunity for youth to participate and continue with blind golf into the future.  Both events create a huge marketing opportunity to showcase and promote blind golf specifically in the blind sports segment.

Would you like to say anything about the importance of ISPS Handa to the development of golf for blind and disabled around the world.

All of the host countries and our membership are very fortunate to have ISPS HANDA supporting and promoting our blind golf events.  Therefore, ISPS HANDA (International Sports Promotion Society) is beneficial to all of our organizations to continue to develop, promote, and grow not only blind golf, but also disabled golf globally. On a personal level and as a representative of our national associations, I am truly grateful and appreciative of Dr. Handa’s great generosity and efforts.