The (text)book has all but closed on the 2013-14 school year, and we’re pleased to report that it was quite the year for Action Team Captains everywhere.
We kicked the year off in style, by hosting training sessions in Seattle and Philadelphia, where more than 100 Action Team Captains gathered to share some of their best practices in areas such as picking and organizing a volunteer project, getting others involved and recruiting future Team Captains.
Action Team Captains also shared their personal volunteering experiences with Major League baseball players from the New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, Oakland Athletics, and Seattle Mariners. Both training sessions were recorded on video and are now available for viewing exclusively to Action Team Captains via our Resource Center.
Following our fall training sessions, we rolled right into our monthly conference calls, when Jason Motte, a relief pitcher with the the 2011 World Series Champion, St. Louis Cardinals, was our featured guest in October. Jason spoke about his relationship with a young boy who lost his battle with pediatric cancer, and how this experience motivated him to start The Jason Motte Foundation. From there he has since launched the Strike Out Cancer Initiative, which has gained the support of players on each of the 30 Major League clubs.
Jason encouraged Action Team Captains to continue their hard work and assured them that their impact would be felt, “There are some way bigger things in life than winning or losing a baseball game,” said Jason.
Other Major Leaguers sharing their passion for volunteering and compassion for others during our monthly calls included Craig Breslow of the Boston Red Sox, John Buck of the Seattle Mariners, Curtis Granderson of the New York Mets, Lucas Harrell of the Houston Astros, Craig Stammen of the Washington Nationals and Nick Swisher of the Cleveland Indians. You can listen to recordings of our monthly calls by clicking here.
Now let’s turn our attention to the outstanding work of our Action Team Captains.
This past school-year we saw Action Team Captains from California to New Jersey and from Maine to Puerto Rico, take ”action” in support of causes important to their respective communities.
For example, Team Captains from West Ranch High School in Valencia, CA assisted at a food pantry for the homeless and then held a baseball clinic for local Special Olympics athletes. While Action Team Captains from Escuela de Deporta in Puerto Rico volunteered in support of a Players Trust City Clinic, alongside current and former Major Leaguers Eric Young, Jr., Ivan DeJesus, Jr. , Hiram Burgos, Saul Rivera, Yamil Benitez and Sandy Alomar, Sr.
One of our newest Action Teams, Watchung Hills Regional High in NJ, didn’t waste any time getting involved in their community. Team Captains there participated in the New Jersey Institute for Disabilities’ Lakeview 5K, raising close to $5,000 for NJID, which was the most raised by any team who participated in the 5k.
In addition to featuring Action Teams on our monthly conference calls and highlighting their activities on our new website, we’re constantly looking for ways to reward the inspiring work of all of our “teammates.” As each school year draws to an end, we do our best to make sure the efforts of Action Team Captains doesn’t go unnoticed.
Throughout the month of April and May, Action Teams from more than 40 high schools received free tickets to Major League Baseball games as our way of saying thank you.And we also send every Team Captain a certificate of achievement signed by a Major Leaguer.
Last, but certainly not least, the Players Trust presented18 Team Captains with a $2,000 college scholarship.
Once again we want to say ‘thank you’ to each and every one of the more than 500 Action Team Captains and their adult coordinators who are committed to working with Major Leaguers to help inspire and train the next generation of volunteers.
If you’re not in on the action, then what are you waiting for? Apply today; we accept school and individual applications all year long.
Stay in touch with us over the summer for news and information concerning the 2014-2015 school year, including our September 2014 training sessions, by bookmarking and visiting ActionTeam.org and by following us on twitter(@_ActionTeam) and Instagram (_actionteam).
If you have any questions, please feel free to email us at ActionTeam@mlbpa.org.
Enjoy the summer!