Santo Domingo, D.N.- The Embassy of the United States through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Major League Baseball (MLB) Players Association and Major League Baseball (MLBPA) signed an agreement to promote education, help in the fight against domestic violence and address the needs of children with disabilities in the Dominican Republic.
The event was presided by US Ambassador James W. Brewster, Mark Feierstein, Associate Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID); Kim Ng, Vice President of Operations for MLB, Ian Penny from the Major League Baseball Player Association (MLBPA).
Dominican MLB players Pedro Martinez, 2015 Baseball Hall of Fame selectee; Carlos Gomez, Milwaukee Brewers All-Star outfielder; and Ervin Santana, Minnesota Twins All-Star pitcher, lent their support to the new alliance and the importance of giving back to their communities.
During his remarks, Ambassador Brewster said: “Playing professional baseball requires dedication, sacrifice and lots of practice, this agreement with the MLB and MLBPA allow people of the United States to share these values with young Dominicans”.
This would benefit from mutual passion for baseball Dominicans motivating thousands of at-risk youth to stay in school and graduate from high school; provide 50 college scholarships to high school students for two years. The partnership helps improve the reading skills of children in primary schools and facilitate access to educational services. In addition, this initiative seeks to train teachers and increase enrollment to include children with disabilities; as well as raise awareness to end domestic violence against women and counsel men who have committed gender-based crimes.
“The partnership with Dominican baseball superstars will help USAID reach thousands of at-risk youth and encourage them to graduate high school, granting them more job opportunities,” said Mark Feierstein, USAID’s Associate Administrator. “We also want to support the Dominican Government’s efforts to enable all children, irrelevant of need, to attend school, and help parents to provide a healthy home environment.”
The activities will take place in home towns of MLB players: Santo Domingo, Santiago, San Cristobal, San Pedro de Macoris, Puerto Plata, Haina, and Bonao.