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Absa and European Tour raise close to €60,000 for Kenyan COVID charities
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Absa and European Tour raise close to €60,000 for Kenyan COVID charities

Close to €60,000 (7,650,000 Kenyan Shillings) was raised for local charities by the European Tour’s Golf for Good initiative and Kenyan Bank Absa during the back-to-back events in the East African nation, the Magical Kenya Open presented by Johnnie Walker and the Kenya Savannah Classic supported by Absa.

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Close to €60,000 (7,650,000 Kenyan Shillings) was raised for local charities by the European Tour’s Golf for Good initiative and Kenyan Bank Absa during the back-to-back events in the East African nation, the Magical Kenya Open presented by Johnnie Walker and the Kenya Savannah Classic supported by Absa.

Absa - official banking partner of the Magical Kenya Open and the presenting sponsor of the Kenya Savannah Classic – had offered to donate Kes1,000 (Kenyan shillings) for every single birdie made at Karen Country Club throughout the back-to-back European Tour events in Kenya.

The European Tour, through its CSR programme, “Golf for Good”, subsequently offered to match those donations, as it aims to support worthy causes in the communities where the Tour plays, meaning that for each birdie made during the back-to-back events a total of Kes2,000 will be donated to charitable causes.

There were a total of 3,825 birdies throughout the two events at Karen Country Club, where South African duo Justin Harding and Daniel van Tonder were the respective winners of the Magical Kenya Open presented by Johnnie Walker and Kenya Savannah Classic supported by Absa.

Over the course of the two weeks, Harding contributed 47 birdies to the cause, 21 one of them during his winning week in the Magical Kenya Open, while van Tonder contributed 30 in total – 23 of them helping him to victory in the Kenya Savannah Classic. The final birdie of the Kenyan double-header was the one which sealed van Tonder’s play-off victory over Thailand’s Jazz Janewatananond.

All funds raised by Absa’s initiative will go towards a deserving local community cause in response to challenges caused by the pandemic.

The Every Birdie Counts campaign - which means that every birdie made in the 2021 Race to Dubai results in a charitable donation - is part of the Tour’s Golf for Good initiative, the overarching umbrella for the Tour’s CSR activities, which embraces support for worthy causes and the communities where the Tour plays, promotion of all areas of sustainability and promotion of inclusivity for all allied to the many health benefits of the game.

“The Covid-19 pandemic is still with us,” said Absa Bank Marketing and Corporate Relations Director Caroline Ndungu. “Governments, businesses and individuals across the globe continue to grapple with different challenges occasioned by this deadly virus. As a corporate that cares for the people of our country, we are committed to hold the hands of Kenyans during this difficult period and we are happy to support deserving causes through the birdies for good initiative. We hope that this contribution will restore hope to a community and give them the courage to continue pursuing their dreams.

"We are grateful to the European Tour, who have collaborated with Absa Bank and pledged to match our donation on a shilling-to-shilling basis.”

Keith Waters, the European Tour’s Chief Operating Officer, said: “We are proud to have supported Absa on such a worthy initiative during our two weeks in Kenya. One of the key pillars of Golf for Good is to make a positive impact in the communities we visit around the globe and this campaign demonstrates our commitment to achieving that.

“Our thanks go to our valued tournament partner for both events, Absa, for helping ensure that the European Tour’s two-week visit to Kenya has left an enduring legacy in the community.”