Golf has been my sport ever since I was a teen playing on my high-school team. Naturally, I was thrilled when, back in 2001, I heard that Room At The Inn was going to host a golf tournament—the Amy Elizabeth Disney Memorial.  I can’t believe it’s been going on so long now!

The Captain’s Choice tournament started out small and now has grown to two flights of teams based on handicaps. Recently, my company of 26 years, thanks be to God, Designature Landscape Architects, has sponsored a hole and donated prizes of landscape designs for the drawings that would follow at the end of the festivities.

Besides the camaraderie the day of the golf tournament, I cannot think of a more enjoyable way of supporting one of the best causes around. RATI is a national model of excellence of supporting life by simply being present with a population that needs hope and compassion. They provide for the present and future for both the pregnant mother and her child or children. They walk 24 hours a day with women to find hope and light in a tumultuous, unplanned part of their lives.

I’ll never forget one recent golf tournament. The tournament was held on one of those days that start out warm and sunny. We wore shorts and sunscreen expecting it to warm up further, but it never did. A cold front moved in, bringing rain as we were finishing our last seven holes. It was the coldest combination of weather, and was probably the worst weather in which I’ve ever golfed.

We were determined to finish, and persisted by wearing everything I could find in my golf bag. We became mostly soaked-through and were just happy to have survived. It’s fun to tell this type of harrowing story, but there was a deeper meaning that wasn’t lost on my golf team that day.

In our minds, if our biggest problem was staying dry and being able to grip a golf club while cold, we could count ourselves beyond blessed when our “sufferings” are put in perspective with the struggles of the women who come to RATI for shelter.  It’s a place for them to come in from the storms of life to find warmth and a guiding hand. RATI’s supporters ensure that these young families not only survive the stormy weather but also thrive after their time there through the college program and comprehensive after care services.

I have invited local friends to the tournament to give them a chance to play and learn about RATI. My best friend from Cincinnati, Tim Sendelbach, whom I have known since third grade, has played in two tournaments. Once Tim and others heard about RATI, they were so glad to hear of such a compassionate and caring organization that filled a real need in Greensboro and in this country. They were instantly impressed and thankful to be able to help promote the worthwhile cause.

We so look forward to this year’s better-than-ever tournament, Rose Gala, and nice weather. Please join us at the Spring Swing! — Randal Romie