Pirates Charities "Fields for Kids" program supports 38 baseball and softball organizations in 2014

Grants to impact more than 8,500 youth throughout Western Pennsylvania and Eastern Ohio

 Pirates Charities, the official philanthropic arm of the Pittsburgh Pirates, recently completed the final of three rounds of the 2014 "Fields for Kids" matching grant program. The program, designed to assist local youth baseball and softball organizations, consists of three rounds of grant cycles each year as the Pirates' nonprofit awards spring, summer and fall matching grants.

Throughout the 2014 season, a combined 38 youth baseball and softball organizations in Pennsylvania and Ohio received grants. Since the "Fields for Kids" program's inception in 2009, a total of 175 individual grants have been distributed.

"Fields for Kids" is one of Pirates Charities' signature programs and provides financial support to improve youth baseball and/or softball facilities through matching grants of $1,000 to $5,000. Grant funds may be used for the upgrading of essential field components such as sod, infield playing surfaces, fencing, dugouts and irrigation systems. Upgrades to the overall facility, including lights, bleachers, scoreboards and concession stands are also eligible.

This year, the positive impact of the "Fields for Kids" grants has been significant as more than 8,500 youth are served by the 38 organizations throughout the region. The program distributed matching grants to 12 organizations in Allegheny County this season and 26 organizations in 14 additional counties in Pennsylvania and Ohio were positively impacted by the program.

In Allegheny County, the Dormont Athletics Boosters Association, Kennedy Township Girls Softball, North Hills Athletic Association, Penn Hills Girls Softball Association and Wilkinsburg Baseball Association received spring grants. Castle Shannon Youth Association, Deer Lakes School District, Elizabeth Forward School District, Elliott West End Athletic Association and Liberty Borough Athletic Association were awarded grants during the summer grant cycle. McCandless Athletic Association and Elizabeth Township received fall "Fields for Kids" grants. Combined, these organizations serve more than 3,000 youth throughout Allegheny County.

Four groups from Fayette County were awarded 2014 grants as the Connellsville Pony and Colt League, the Fairchance Youth League and Perryopolis Youth Baseball and Softball were each recipients in the summer and the Dunbar Area Little League was awarded a grant in the fall.

In Centre County, Penns Valley Little League Softball and Diamonds r 4 Ever each received matching grants in the spring and the State College Little League was awarded a grant during the fall cycle.

Three Mercer County groups received $5,000 matching grants as the Lakeview School District (spring), City of Hermitage (summer) and the Greenville Trojan Baseball Boosters (fall) each were recipients.

Other organizations receiving 2014 grants through the Fields for Kids program in Pennsylvania were:

  • Clarion County: Knox Area Baseball Association and the New Bethlehem Little League received spring grants.
  • Venango County: Franklin Little League and the Cranberry High School Varsity Softball were each spring grant recipients.
  • Cambria County: Patton Youth Association (spring) and the Laurel Auto Sports Complex (fall) each were awarded grants.
  • Somerset County: Berlin Youth Baseball and Softball League (summer) and Somerset Youth Baseball and Softball (fall) each received matching grants.
  • Westmoreland County: Franklin Regional Athletic Association (summer) and the Lower Burrell Little League (fall) each were recipients.
  • Elk County: Saint Mary's Little League Softball received a summer matching grant.
  • Forest County: Forest Area School District was awarded a fall grant.
  • Indiana County: Purchase Line School District received a spring grant.
  • Lawrence County: City of New Castle was awarded a summer grant.
  • Washington County: Chartiers Houston Girls Softball Association received a matching grant during the fall cycle.

Finally, in Monroe County, Ohio, the Sardis Little League was awarded a matching grant during the spring 2014 grant cycle becoming the fifth Ohio-based group to receive a "Fields for Kids" grant since the program began.

Applications for the 2015 "Fields for Kids" grants are now being accepted for eligible organizations in western Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio and West Virginia. To find out more information on the "Fields for Kids" program, please visit pirates.com/piratescharities.

 Application due dates for 2015 are as follows:

Application Due Date

 Grant Determination Date

March 2, 2015

April 10, 2015

May 1, 2015

June 26, 2015

July 31, 2015

September 18, 2015