Kids all around the world are living in athletically deprived environments. Children are living without many sports like baseball. When they do play they scrimmage, play games, practice and can have fun. But many times it is not just about the game, it’s about the kids and what they’re doing with their free time when they don’t have a youth baseball program in their community.
The problem today is that many baseball programs such as Little League and Cal Ripken aren’t getting the funding they need to have a baseball program, especially in the inner-city communities. All of the money these leagues need to provide kids with uniforms and gear comes from the children’s parents though paid sign-ups. However, in a tough economy with fewer jobs, parents are having a hard time paying for activities like baseball. They need to pay for necessities and have less money for sports.
I am very thankful that I have always been lucky enough and have always had the money to enroll in Little League. Along the way I have made friends, have had great coaches and have been taught the value of teamwork. I believe baseball has shown me how to win and lose as a team, it has shown me how to play the game and has given me this chance to reflect on my past experiences so that other kids can learn as they move through the levels and become better players.
I hope that all kids have the chance to learn the same lessons that I have learned.
But the only way to learn these lessons is to play the game. This is why I urge all young athletes to get involved in sports. It will only do you good. You can make friends, learn about the game, stay out of trouble and have fun. Studies show that kids involved in athletics do better in school. So because you are involved in athletics you may see your grades go up.
Take advantage of your baseball program — please help baseball make a comeback.
Andrew Hewitt is a seventh-grader at Schalmont Middle School