Buy a Baseball for $1
August 2014, 25 Canadian youth ballplayers went, experienced and competed in one of the most famous baseball meccas in the world; Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. It was the first time Canada had been invited to participate in the Latin American Baseball Classic in its over 32 year existence.
What started as a baseball experience and cultural exchange, turned out to be so much more and left lasting imprints with all Canadians who travelled. The kids played in one of the poorest parts of Santo Domingo and the experience was humbling.
Used to Canadian ballfield standards, some fields had rolled up shirts or stuffed potato sacks for bases. They shared gloves because they didn't have enough. They practice with worn out practice or rocks when they don't have a baseball, often using sticks.
Yet the Latin youth showed up to every game smiling, happy and glad to be there. They encouraged each other and they encouraged Canada - no matter if they were winning or losing.
When it was time to go home, Canadian players left behind their team jerseys, hats and one less bag of baseballs to these amazing Latin youth who taught the them so much. The joy and gratitude for receiving these small Canadian treasures was unfathomable.
Canada will return to the Dominican summer of 2015. Our goal is to raise funds to take extra Canada jerseys, hats, baseballs and donated equipment to distribute to these struggling youth.
Please visit the 2014 Team Canada LABC pages for photos, comments and videos of this amazing time.
On behalf of the 2015 Canadian teams, thank you for your support and thank you for sharing!
"Friendships born on the field of athletic strife are the real gold of competition."