The Pirates Charities Fields for Kids program provides financial support to improve youth baseball and/or softball facilities via matching grants to nonprofit organizations and local government units that operate baseball and/or softball programs.
Since the Fields for Kids program's inception in 2009, 326 individual grants have been distributed in the greater Pittsburgh region, in addition to 45 grants in the Pirates Spring Training Home of Bradenton, Florida since the program began there in 2011.
The Pirates help Brookline Little League Association celebrate their Opening Day as part of the Pirates Charities Fields for Kids program.
MATCHING GRANT PARAMETERS
The Fields for Kids program is open to any independent nonprofit tax-exempt organization, school or local government unit that operates youth baseball and/or softball programs within the Pittsburgh Pirates market area, which primarily encompasses Western Pennsylvania, Eastern Ohio, and West Virginia.* Any organization operating baseball or softball programs for youth that has secured funds equal to or exceeding the request amount (secured funds can include in-kind contributions of materials or labor) may apply for a grant.
Organizations must be governed by active boards and have sufficient revenue to operate their leagues. Organizations receiving grants will be required to prominently display provided signage recognizing Pirates Charities' support. Organizations are limited to one Fields for Kids grant every other year (may not receive grants in consecutive years).
Grant applications will be accepted during two grant periods per calendar year. For each grant period, Pirates Charities will award a select number of grants ranging from $1,000- $25,000.
Eligible projects include the upgrading of essential field components, such as new sod, infield, fencing, dugouts, and irrigation systems; upgrades to the overall facility to include lights, bleachers, batting cages, scoreboards and concession stands. The purchase of land, parking lots, press boxes and restrooms are ineligible. Routine maintenance of fields will not qualify.
Funding requests for projects that have already been completed will not be considered. Projects must be completed within one year from the date of the grant award. Organizations cannot receive grants in consecutive years. Organizations that have received a grant in the past must have returned a final grant report demonstrating project completion.
*The Pittsburgh Pirates market area includes the following counties:
In Pennsylvania: Allegheny; Armstrong; Beaver; Bedford; Blair; Butler; Cambria; Clarion; Clearfield; Crawford; Elk; Erie; Fayette; Forest; Greene; Huntingdon; Indiana; Jefferson; Lawrence; Mercer; Somerset; Venango; Warren; Washington; Westmoreland.
In West Virginia: Barbour; Brooke; Doddridge; Grant; Hampshire; Hancock; Harrison; Lewis; Marion; Marshall; Mineral; Monongalia; Ohio; Pleasants; Preston; Ritchie; Taylor; Tucker; Tyler; Wetzel.
In Ohio: Ashtabula; Belmont; Carroll; Columbiana; Coshocton; Geauga; Guernsey; Harrison; Holmes; Jefferson; Mahoning; Monroe; Noble; Portage; Stark; Summit; Trumbull; Tuscarawas; Washington; Wayne.
In Maryland: Allegany; Garrett.
The Pirates Charities Fields for Kids program is administered by Pirates Charities staff who will review all requests, pay matching grants, work closely with grantee organizations to ensure project completion, and maintain program records.
Organizations must complete an application and submit all required documents for consideration. Applications will be accepted and reviewed throughout the year.
2019 Due Dates and Determinations
- Application Due Date: February 15, 2019
- Grant Determination: March 15, 2019
- Application Due Date: July 12, 2019
- Grant Determination: August 9, 2019
Completed applications should be directed to:
c/o Pittsburgh Pirates
PNC Park at North Shore
115 Federal Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15212
2018 GRANT RECIPIENTS
A total of 34 youth baseball and softball organizations serving over 9,100 youth located throughout three states are impacted by the 2018 grants. Groups in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia were awarded funds to help ensure their programs continue to thrive. In 2018, Pirates Charities distributed the 34 grants over two grant cycles (Spring and Fall) with 22 grants between $1,000 and $5,000 being awarded to area nonprofits, 11 grants of between $5,000 and $10,000 distributed, and one $25,000 grant awarded.
The positive impact of the grants can be seen throughout western Pennsylvania as 29 of the grants have been awarded over 15 counties in the state, with the remaining five grants awarded in Ohio (2) and West Virginia (3).
The largest matching grant received this round was awarded to the New Castle Area School District in Lawrence County. The group received $25,000 to assist with the renovation of a 20,000 square foot indoor training facility for use by all students in the district. The project includes the installation of three batting cages, field turf and more.
"The Pirates Organization has afforded the children of the New Castle Area School District an opportunity of a lifetime," said Debbie DeBlasio, acting Superintendent of the New Castle School District. "Through the kindness of the organization's donation, the New Castle Area School District students will have a training facility that will be state of the art. The facility will be primarily used as a training center for all of our athletic teams. The support means so much, not only to the school, but to the students this is helping."
Nearly $110,000 in grants were awarded in the $5,000 to $10,000 range to 11 area organizations including the Bridgeville Athletic Association, in Allegheny County, to assist with flood restoration of a field. In neighboring Beaver County, the Central Valley Youth Baseball Association received help to replace an infield, warning track and irrigation system and more; and the Hopewell Youth Baseball Association, will receive assistance for a field lighting project for a field used by nearly 300 boys and girls.
In Crawford County, the City of Titusville received a $10,000 grant to assist with fence replacement, field leveling and the installation of a scoreboard. In Erie County, the Millcreek Youth Athletic Association was awarded a grant to rebuild dugouts and retaining walls, install drainage, replace dirt, grass, a shed and gate, as well as field grading. Over 1,000 boys and girls participate in this program.
In Indiana County, two organizations received grants totaling $19,500 as Clymer Little League and Homer City Area Athletic Boosters Club each were awarded grants for fencing, drainage, backstops, benches and more. In Fayette County, South Union Township serves over 350 boys and girls and received assistance with backstop reconstruction, as well as installation of a retaining wall and fencing.
In Westmoreland County, the Burrell Baseball Association received help to replace a pitching mound and batting cage netting; and in Venango County, the Franklin Little League received a grant to build fencing that will help protect players and spectators.
In Ohio's Trumbull County, the Newton Falls Youth Baseball and Softball League received a $10,000 grant to help repair and replace fencing on five fields, construct a concession stand, rebuild a dugout, remove trees and repair lighting.
The remainder of the Fields for Kids matching grants awarded throughout the two grant cycles are in the amounts of $1,000 to $5,000. This season there were 22 of these grants awarded in 15 counties and they include:
- Bethel Park Girls Softball Association
- Brentwood Athletic Association
- Elizabeth Forward Youth Athletics
- Kennedy Girls Softball, Inc.
- Mount Lebanon Girls Softball Association
- Natrona Heights Baseball Softball Association, Inc.
- Leechburg Area School District
- Coaches4Kids Foundation
- VE Arbutas Youth Softball and Baseball League
- North Union Township
- Charmichael High School Softball
- Shenango Athletic Association
- Reynolds Rebels Fastpitch Softball
- Mercer Girls Fastpitch Summer League
- Berlin Youth Baseball and Softball League
- Burgettstown Area Youth Baseball League
- Union Finley Athletic Association
- Central Hempfield Baseball Softball
- Doddridge County Parks
- Weirton Baseball Association
- City of Morgantown
- Toronto City School District