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      Kroc Center will not rescue First Tee program

      The Salvation Army Kroc Center says it cannot rescue a youth golf program forced to dissolve for financial reasons.

      The Great River First Tee program announced in May that its contract with the national chapter expired.

      First Tee looked to the Kroc Center as a possible lifeline for the program. The center announced Tuesday that it doesn't have the financial wherewithal to rescue the shuttered program.

      "Following a great deal of research and discussion, The Salvation Army Kroc Center has determined that we will not be able to offer The First Tee program in Quincy within the foreseeable future," Kroc Center Operations Director Chad Rodgers said in a press release statement. "Although a very difficult decision, it was extremely apparent that the financial issues which the former chapter of The First Tee experienced would also inhibit our ability to provide a quality program at a reasonable cost for our local youth."

      First Tee teaches life skills to kids through the game of golf. Rodgers said that the national chapter currently doesn't provide any funding for new or fledgling chapters.

      "Without a significant source of financial backing, The Salvation Army simply cannot take on this endeavor as this time," the release says. "The First Tee is a tremendous organization and one we will consider working with in the future. In the meantime, the Kroc Center will continue to offer quality youth programs and will strive to enhance youth golf programs in the Quincy area within the scope of our current resources."