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MLB, MLBPA donate $500K to aid nonprofits

'Healthy Relationships Community Grant' program backs domestic violence, mental health, youth causes
August 21, 2020

Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) today announced the second round of recipients of the joint “Healthy Relationships Community Grant” program. The current distribution of $500,000 is going to 11 nonprofit organizations, marking $1 million donated to 21 organizations as part of the second

Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) today announced the second round of recipients of the joint “Healthy Relationships Community Grant” program. The current distribution of $500,000 is going to 11 nonprofit organizations, marking $1 million donated to 21 organizations as part of the second of seven donation phases through 2021. The focus areas for the organizations receiving funding include support for survivors of domestic violence, mental health resiliency, and developing positive relationship skills in youth as a preventive measure to breaking the cycle of violence.

Organizations were encouraged to apply for funding to cover general operating expenses, allowing them to respond to their greatest needs, or program support. The recipients are as follows:

Center for Youth Wellness

San Francisco, CA

Mental Health Resiliency

General Operating

National Domestic Violence Hotline

Austin, TX

Survivors of Domestic Violence

General Operating

National Network to End Domestic Violence Inc.

Washington, DC

Survivors of Domestic Violence & Email Hotline

NEWS - Domestic Violence and Sexual Abuse Services

Napa, CA

Survivors of Domestic Violence

General Operating

PeaceWorks, Inc.

Bailey, CO

Survivors of Domestic Violence

General Operating

Tahirih Justice Center

Falls Church, VA

Survivors of Domestic Violence

General Operating

The Give an Hour Nonprofit Corporation

Bethesda, MD

Mental Health Resiliency

Emotional Life Skills for Families

The One Love Foundation

Bronxville, NY

Relationship Skills

General Operating

Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence

Olympia, WA

Relationship Skills

Team Up Washington

WomenShelter of Long Beach

Long Beach, CA

Survivors of Domestic Violence

General Operating

YWCA Richmond

Richmond, VA

Relationship Skills

Empower RVA Teens

“Our vision with this grant program was to invest in high-impact organizations changing lives and communities,” said Melanie LeGrande, MLB vice president of social responsibility. “In our second round of funding, the 11 grantees are a diverse group that spans a wide spectrum of programming which supports immigrants, families of COVID-19 frontline healthcare heroes, high school and college students, and survivors of domestic violence. We couldn’t be more pleased to provide the organizations with funding to advance their work and outcomes around relationship health.”

“We continue to be thankful to the many organizations whose work focuses on the promotion of healthy relationships,” said Leonor Colon, Sr. Director International and Domestic Player Operations. “The organizations that have been selected are doing incredible work, and our Players are proud to support their efforts as they increase resources and expand their reach.”

This overall initiative is a $3 million commitment to provide funding in 2020 and 2021 to organizations that support healthy relationships through programs designed to build and improve relationship skills of the next generation, strengthen and provide critical services to survivors of domestic violence, and improve mental health resiliency among vulnerable populations.

U.S.-based nonprofit and global non-governmental organizations (NGOs) can still apply for localized support at and throughout the year, with proposals reviewed on a quarterly grant cycle. Nonprofits and NGOs may apply for grants of up to $50,000 for general operating or programmatic funding for one or more of the following categories: Healthy Relationship Practices/Education, Support for Survivors of Domestic Violence, and/or Mental Health Resiliency. Grant applications will be evaluated quarterly based on assessment of the population served, organization strength, impact, partnerships, sustainability of the programs, and more. Additionally, MLB Club charities and Major League Players have been encouraged to apply directly for up to $25,000 as part of a gift matching component of the initiative, with grant evaluations based on documentation of direct funding and commitment to the issue.

This initiative is intended as a prevention strategy to empower the next generation to understand the components of a healthy relationship. Organizational efforts supported by grant funding may include public education, with a preference for youth populations, on the difference between healthy and unhealthy relationships as it relates to interpersonal violence (e.g., intimate partner, family or teen dating). Examples of education efforts include creating, producing & distributing public service announcements with relevant content and call to action as well as conferences or events focusing on awareness. Funding can also go toward supporting existing, or introducing new, programming on how to break the cycle of violence.

Strengthening and providing services to survivors of domestic violence is of critical importance to this grant initiative. Efforts may include (a) capacity building in support of the organizational mission of the nonprofit or NGO; (b) mental health support; (c) professional and life skills workshops as well as additional education and materials to improve employee readiness and workplace development; or (d) advocacy efforts to reduce domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking.

Efforts toward building and improving mental health resiliency for vulnerable populations may include providing greater access to (a) quality mental health services and wellness programs; (b) preventative programs designed to reduce suicide, suicidal ideations and self-harm; (c) training programs for mental health professionals; or (d) school or community-based interventions.

The joint donation for the “Healthy Relationships Community Grant” represents an ongoing commitment by MLB and the MLBPA to provide support to causes that assist vulnerable populations, which has historically included financial assistance toward disaster relief and recovery as well as human trafficking prevention.