Nov 12, 2010

The Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation Partners with Mass Mutual and United Water

Together they provide programs for children of Hampden County, Mass.

The Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation (CRSF) celebrated a successful year of programming in Western Massachusetts this weekend. Thanks to support from two private organizations, United Water and Mass Mutual, young people from Hampden County, Mass., participated in year-round programming with deputies from the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department. CRSF provided $25,000 in cash grants to support the program in Springfield, Holyoke and Chicopee. On Nov. 6, the children participated in a Quickball tournament at the Boys & Girls Club of Springfield to celebrate the programming.

“United Water and Mass Mutual’s commitment to youth outreach and community involvement makes them ideal corporate partners for the Ripken Foundation,” said CRSF Executive Director Steve Salem. “We are very excited to be joining forces with this fine organization and look forward to beginning our work together in Massachusetts.”

The partnership utilizes the Foundation’s Badges for Baseball program to teach more than 500 Massachusetts-area youth valuable life lessons, including teamwork, leadership and the value of preserving the environment, particularly water.

“United Water strives to be a responsible corporate citizen in every community we serve,” said Jack Bonomo, vice president and division manager of United Water. “By teaming up with the Ripken Foundation, we will be able to reach children in Holyoke, Springfield and every corner of Massachusetts through a unique, exciting and proven program.”

The Ripken Foundation launched its Badges for Baseball program in Massachusetts in 2008. Working in partnership with the Massachusetts Sheriff’s Assn., local Boys & Girls Clubs and other community organizations, the foundation has provided funding, baseball and softball equipment, program training and staff to run programming in 36 cities and towns across Massachusetts. The statewide program opened the doors to the private partnerships with United Water and Mass Mutual.

“Our partnership with the Ripken Foundation has provided children in Holyoke, Springfield, and Chicopee with opportunities and experiences that have changed lives and made a real impact,” said Hampden County Sheriff Michael Ashe, who runs Badges for Baseball in communities across western Massachusetts. “We are excited that this partnership will help the foundation continue to take root in Hampden County and across Massachusetts.”

By joining forces with Mass Mutual and United Water, the Foundation’s Badges for Baseball program is now one of the most comprehensive public/private partnerships for youth development and delinquency prevention in Massachusetts.