The Baseball Tomorrow Fund (BTF) and the New York Mets Foundation will donate up to $1 million through a relief grant program for youth baseball and softball organizations that were directly affected by Superstorm Sandy. The grant program, which will be administered by the Baseball Tomorrow Fund, is intended to provide support to organizations to maintain or re-establish youth baseball and softball programs and/or facilities affected by the storm. Grant applications are currently being accepted through May 31. Application instructions and evaluation criteria are available at BaseballTomorrowFund.com.
"Immediately after the storm, we made a pledge to help our hometown recover from Sandy. This grant program, in partnership with the Baseball Tomorrow Fund, to restore fields damaged by Sandy is another opportunity for us to lend a hand in this ongoing process," said Fred Wilpon, Chairman & CEO, New York Mets. "The recovery effort has been and will continue to be a priority for all of us at the Mets in the weeks and months ahead."
"The aftermath of Superstorm Sandy is still being felt throughout many communities in the United States, and the national pastime is honored to continue our support of the efforts to rebuild," said Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig. "Major League Baseball is proud that the joint commitment of the Baseball Tomorrow Fund and the New York Mets Foundation will help local baseball and softball organizations recover from the storm, and all of us throughout the game hope that the donation will ease one aspect of the significant burdens on these communities."
"The players are pleased to join with the Commissioner's Office and the Clubs, including the New York Mets Foundation, in supporting the Baseball Tomorrow Fund's efforts to offer financial assistance to youth baseball and softball organizations based in areas hit hardest by Superstorm Sandy," said MLBPA Executive Director Michael Weiner. "The storm's destruction was devastating, and many children living in its path have suffered through challenging disruptions to their daily lives and surroundings. With that in mind, we look forward to doing our part to help communities get their baseball and softball programs up and running as soon as possible."
BTF, which is a joint initiative between Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA), is designed to promote the growth of youth baseball and softball throughout the world. Since its formation by MLB and the MLBPA in 1999, BTF has awarded more than $23 million, benefiting approximately 325,000 young people in the United States, Canada, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, Africa and Asia.
Driven by Mets ownership, the Mets Foundation follows the top-down philosophy of "Doing Well While Doing Good" to give back to the community through multiple platforms and initiatives throughout the year in and around New York.