FORT MYERS, Fla. (April 29, 2024) – The Bobby Nichols-Fiddlesticks Charity Foundation presented nearly $1.8 million in grants to six designated charities of the 22nd Annual Nichols Cup tournaments and auction gala, serving abused and at-risk children in Southwest Florida.

The record-breaking funds were distributed at the Piper’s annual meeting on April 2 among the Foundation’s two primary charity partners, Children’s Advocacy Center of Southwest Florida and Abuse Counseling & Treatment, and additional beneficiaries Blessings in a BackpackLiberty Youth Ranch, Pace Center for Girls, Lee and Catholic Charities, Diocese of Venice.

Founded by longtime Fiddlesticks resident Bobby Nichols, winner of 14 PGA Tour tournaments, the PGA recognizes the Nichols Cup golf tournament as one of the most successful community sponsored Pro-Am tournaments in the U.S. To date, the Nichols Cup tournaments and auction gala has raised a total of more than $18 million to benefit local children’s charities.

“Being able to support the lives of abused and at-risk children in our community is a blessing,” said Nichols. “Thanks to the power and compassion of the community that surrounds us, we’re able to come together for a greater cause – benefitting the lives of our children and creating a brighter future for them.”

The Foundation’s primary charity partners, The Children’s Advocacy Center of Southwest Florida (CAC) and Abuse Counseling and Treatment (ACT) were each awarded a $595,000 donation. The CAC works to provide a coordinated response to child victims of abuse and neglect and improves the lives of at-risk children and their families through prevention services. ACT serves victims of domestic violence and their children, as well as survivors of sexual assault and human trafficking in Lee, Hendry and Glades counties.

Blessings in a Backpack received a $187,000 grant to support its ongoing mission in Southwest Florida. With the donation, the nonprofit provides backpacks filled with kid-friendly, ready-to-eat food items to more than 1,400 underserved children at Colonial Elementary and James Stephens Elementary to take home every weekend during the school year. Liberty Youth Ranch, a charitable residential program based in Bonita Springs, received a $160,000 donation. The long-term children’s residential group home provides a safe home, education and family to abused, neglected and homeless children.

The Foundation awarded $105,000 to Catholic Charities, Diocese of Venice, to support their anti-human trafficking program. Serving ten counties in Southwest Florida, the Diocese of Venice provides intensive case management and mental health counseling to victims of severe human trafficking as they attempt to integrate into society after being rescued. Pace Center for Girls, Lee received a $105,000 grant from the Foundation. Pace Lee provides academic programs and counseling services to girls and young women ages 11 to 18 who are working to overcome risk factors such as poverty, substance abuse, domestic violence, grief, mental health and physical, emotional or sexual abuse.

“On behalf of the foundation, I want to extend my gratitude to each and every donor, participant and volunteer who has contributed to making these donations possible, especially during this record year of fundraising,” said Bryan Simmering, president of the Bobby Nichols-Fiddlesticks Charity Foundation. “Your compassion, care and generosity will make profound impacts on Southwest Florida’s at-risk children for years to come.”

To learn more about the Bobby Nichols-Fiddlesticks Charity Foundation, email or visit

About Bobby Nichols-Fiddlesticks Charity Foundation

The Bobby Nichols-Fiddlesticks Charity Foundation was founded in 2002 by a group of Fiddlesticks members, known as Pipers, who volunteer to organize and run the annual Nichols Cup Pro-Am Golf & Tennis Tournaments. The annual tournament recognizes the contributions and accomplishments of golfer Bobby Nichols, a longtime resident of Fiddlesticks and winner of 14 PGA Tour tournaments including the 1964 PGA Championship and 1974 Canadian Open. Since the formation of the Bobby Nichols-Fiddlesticks Charity Foundation 22 years ago, more than $18 million has been donated to local children’s charities. To learn more, visit or call 239-633-4579.