The Philanthropist: Four-time Tour winner Notah Begay, 37, is battling obesity and diabetes among Native American youths

Jeff Newton

\n"Type-2 Diabetes is an enormous problem in this country, but in Native American communities, it's an epidemic. My uncle just died of heart failure at 60. My mom has diabetes, my grandmother died of diabetes, and my first cousin lost his foot to diabetes. There's not one family in what we call 'Indian Country' that's not personally dealing with this illness.

\n"Type-2 diabetes is preventable — the way to curb this problem is to address the health and wellness of the Native American youth. The Notah Begay III Foundation uses golf and soccer to provide health education to communities that have historically seen youth programs come and go with grant cycles. Luckily, I didn't sleep through all my classes at Stanford [Begay has an economics degree], and I make sure that our donors' gifts are invested productively and responsibly to create a sustainable program that will serve the community for decades.

\n"We've raised a lot of money through two Notah Begay Challenge skins games, with help from some of my friends like Mike Weir, Camilo Villegas and my 'brother,' Tiger Woods. Hopefully, we can move the needle on diabetes in these communities for a whole generation."

\n• More on Notah Begay from GOLF.com

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