When Danny Reedy, unCUFFED board member, first suggested and chaired the ministry’s annual golf tournament back in 2016, he faced a challenge. With only six months to plan and business owners “over saturated” by giving opportunities and requests, Danny found it “difficult to get sponsorships,” which are essential to successful golf events. Nevertheless, God provided beautiful weather and generous hearts, making the final event “very successful.” Three years later, though, the event has grown beyond our expectations, drawing more players and givers than ever before. T-shirt, sign, and soda donations (from SpecWorks, Vytis Shield, and Pepsi respectively) as well as our first “big sponsors” in Landers Appliance, Clark Machinery Sales, and SWBC Mortgages were all answered prayers for our ministry. After such a successful event, I talked with Danny to learn more about how the tournament has grown and what has inspired our sponsors to invest in unCUFFED.
“The whole point of the golf tournament is to raise money for the ministry and introduce people to unCUFFED,” Danny explained. “For many people, the tournament is their way of giving—an outlet for people who are not already interacting with unCUFFED.” Most of the sponsors are local Christian business owners, many of whom do not go into the facilities themselves but “want to make that financially possible for people who have that calling. There aren’t a lot of opportunities to give inside jails. People believe in unCUFFED’s mission and they want to be partners in this kingdom work. Whenever you talk to a Christian business owner, they are seeking to address needs that are not being met by other ministries They give to unCUFFED because they know there’s a need there, so when they hear about someone meeting that need, they want to give to that.”
Danny feels that many also give to unCUFFED because they feel personally connected to the ministry. As a business owner, when faced with such a wide array of charitable opportunities, Danny feels “you have to lean on people that God has put in your life and go to them for guidance.” The golf tournament allows everyone to build such personal connections, because players “actually get to meet the people doing the work, the boots on the ground.”
Overall, Danny sums up the attitude of many of our sponsors eloquently: “giving is always a good opportunity for the giver, both a blessing for the organization and an equal blessing for the giver. To be able to be part of something where they’re doing God’s work, it’s really a blessing.”