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Golfers Drive Out Malaria


Julia Frisbie, Greater Northwest Episcopal Area
September 15th, 2015

Early this month, 67 golfers converged on Washougal, WA for a new charity tournament called Drive Out Malaria. Despite temperatures in the high nineties, they played all 18 holes in a scramble format and had a great time! The event raised a total of $10,068 for Imagine No Malaria.

The tournament was held at the Orchard Hills Golf and Country Club, and it was organized by  PNW’s Vancouver District. Thanks to gifts from the event’s sponsors– including major donations from Hoesly Eco Automotive and David and Cara Knode of Coldwell Banker SEAL— 100% of the money that the golfers paid for admission and extras went to Imagine No Malaria.

Highlights of the tournament included a pink ball challenge, access to a private country club where many of the golfers hadn’t been able to play before, and a bratwurst dinner afterwards. The day went off without a hitch, except for a mild case of heat exhaustion that affected one golfer from Mill Plain UMC. She was treated at the course, went home early, and recovered fully later that evening. Even with this difficulty, the staff at Orchard Hills helped the event to go so smoothly that its organizers are already contemplating a second tournament next year.

Vancouver District Superintendent David Nieda had the vision that brought this event to life. Although he and most of the other people who planned the tournament came from the Vancouver area, some golfers came from as far away as Seattle, including PNW staffers David Valera and Daniel Foster. These church leaders golfed alongside pastors, laypeople, and community members.

“I was thrilled to see people from two conferences and at least four districts come together for a single event,” says Julia Frisbie, who coordinates this campaign in the northwest. “It’s a great example of how this cause crosses boundaries and inspires us to work together towards a common goal.”

At the banquet, she reported that the $10,000+ raised by this event could pay for bed nets for 1,000 families, or buy lifesaving medicine for 2,000 sick kids. It may not be enough to drive out malaria once and for all, but for a rural village in Africa, it could make a world of difference.