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The PGIs for Literacy

In 1985, while playing on what had been his grandfather's favourite golf course, award-winning Canadian broadcaster and journalist Peter Gzowski had an idea... 

Why couldn't he organize a fun-filled golf tournament for a few friends and perhaps raise a dollar or two for adult literacy at the same time?

A year later, his 'little fundraising tournament' evolved into the Peter Gzowski Invitational (PGI), a national series of locally produced golf tournaments featuring musicians, media and literacy celebrities.

Held annually in every province and territory, over 40,000 people have taken part in PGIs across the country since 1986.  In the process, more than $13 million has been raised for volunteer-based literacy programs.  These funds directly support literacy initiatives in the provinces and territories where the PGIs are held.

Peter Gzowski's Vision

The PGIs bring together so much that matters to me: friends, laughter, poetry, music – all playing to make a better world.  Thanks to the thousands of golfers, corporate sponsors and hardworking volunteers, the PGIs have become a network that stretches from sea to sea to, as I am proud to say, sea.

We've raised millions of dollars to help people learn to read and write or just make their lives a little better.  And we're going to keep on doing it.

- Peter Gzowski, 1934-2002


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photo of Peter MansbridgePeter Mansbridge, PGI National Spokesperson

In my association with the PGIs, I have come to understand some of the many reasons why a person has low literacy skills – including learning challenges that undermined self-confidence, difficult childhood circumstances or perhaps economic pressures that short-circuited educational opportunities. Every adult learner I have met expresses so much gratitude to their tutor for imparting the gift of literacy. By participating in a PGI event, you are helping to deliver that gift.

- Peter Mansbridge, Anchor of CBC-TV’s The National and National Spokesperson for the PGIs.


photo of Shelagh RogersShelagh Rogers, Honorary PGI National Chair

“Across this vast country the PGIs have become a ribbon of hope that links a network of unsung heroes – volunteer literacy tutors. Their work is instrumental to the effort by adults who struggle with reading and writing. It is a noble cause indeed, and I applaud and support each and every learner and tutor.”

- Shelagh Rogers O.C., Host of CBC’s The Next Chapter and Honorary PGI National Chair

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