Round Up 4 Els for Autism Rolls Out Nationwide This Month

Dallas, TX (April 1, 2024) —April is World Autism Month and around the country at facilities of Arcis Golf—the 2nd largest owner and operator of private, resort and daily fee clubs—that means it’s round up time!  “Round Up 4 Els for Autism,” the company’s annual April initiative to raise funds for Els for Autism Foundation®, kicks off on Monday, April 1, and lasts for the entire month. The global mission of Els for Autism is to transform the lives of people with autism and those who care for them through lifetime services and collaborative partnerships. 

An extension of Arcis’s partnership with professional golfer and World Golf Hall of Fame member Ernie Els, his wife, Liezl, and Els for Autism Foundation, April’s program has two components. Purchases—including merchandise, food and beverage, and golf—made by Arcis Golf club members, guests, and patrons are “rounded up” to the nearest dollar with the round-up amounts donated to Els for Autism. Additionally, each facility can stage its own events such as a golf tournament, fun run, casino night, fashion show, and more to raise funds that directly impact the lives of individuals and families affected by autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In 2023, the campaign raised over $150,000 and since the program’s inception, Arcis Golf—through its members, clubs, and customers—has donated more than $500,000 to Els for Autism.

“World Autism Month represents an excellent opportunity to promote autism awareness, acceptance, and to draw attention to the 1 in 36 children affected by ASD in the United States,” said Blake Walker, Founder and CEO, Arcis Golf. “The Els for Autism Foundation funds important programs that are the leading examples of what can be available to people with ASD.”

Additional financial contributions will be accepted through October 15 at 3 PM EST, either at an Arcis Golf facility or via an online donation. Clubs or individuals raising or donating $15,000 or more will be invited to send a two-person team to play in November’s Els for Autism Golf Challenge Grand Finale event at The Breakers Palm Beach.

“The support and partnership of Arcis Golf is truly appreciated,” said Ernie Els, who founded the Els for Autism Foundation in 2009 with his wife, Liezl, after their son, Ben, was diagnosed. “By rounding up and engaging with both Arcis’s members and guests, we can generate funds to make the world a better place for individuals with autism.”

The newest addition to The Els Center of Excellence® campus in Jupiter, Florida is the Stoops Family Adult Services Building. The 21,000-square-foot facility is home to vocational labs, classrooms, and therapy suites to support employment and independent living for autistic adults who have exited the school system.

A new program, U Can Employ™ powered by Els for Autism, equips companies with the essential tools and strategies for embedding autism inclusion into the company’s fabric, ensuring businesses can recruit, hire, onboard, and retain autistic employees. Starting later this year, a pilot program will be launched at The Club at Weston Hills, an Arcis facility, in the greater Ft. Lauderdale area where autistic adults will work in golf maintenance, operations, retail, or food and beverage.

“The commitment shown by Arcis Golf and the team at The Club at Weston Hills towards implementing strategies learned through U Can Employ across various departments is truly commendable,” said Els for Autism Executive Director Marlene Sotelo, EdD., BCBA-D, MT-BC. “We are enthusiastic about the prospect of supporting the company and its current and future employees in their journey. We eagerly anticipate the positive impact of this partnership and the meaningful strides that Arcis Golf will make towards fostering a culture of autism inclusion.”

The partnership with Els for Autism Foundation is one of the numerous ways Arcis Golf supports national philanthropic organizations, including United States Adaptive Golf Alliance, Love Hope Strength Foundation, and Women In Golf Foundation, in addition to the many local charities in the communities it serves.

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