When boys and girls are playing baseball or softball, they aren't home alone. They aren't wandering the streets looking for something to do. They aren't getting into trouble.
As many parents know, youth sports can be expensive. Team fees, lessons, uniforms, equipment, travel-all combine to make participation limited to those families with disposable income. Some of the kids who can most benefit from everything baseball and softball have to offer are simply left out.
In 2009, the Cedar Rapids Kernels partnered with Perfect Game USA, Minor League Baseball Charities, The Rawlings Sporting Goods Company and the Cedar Rapids Park & Recreation Department to launch the "League of Dreams," a youth baseball program for second-and third-graders in flood-affected areas. At Prospect Meadows Ball Fields, this program will be extended for kids in other grades.
When we as a community invest in the development of our youth, we must concentrate even more on those who lack opportunities. Our community is only as strong as our young people, after all.