The Seattle Mariners today announced the first of a series of Community Impact Grants to promote racial justice and economic equity across the state of Washington.
The $1 million Community Impact Grant program was announced by the Mariners last July as part of a broader commitment to invest in programs, organizations and partnerships focused on remedying historic inequities in health and economic security through policy advocacy and community-based initiatives.
The first grant has been awarded to the Fund for Inclusive Recovery, a program unveiled today by the Seattle Foundation to address widening inequities in our community that have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to the $100,000 grant, the Mariners will work with the Seattle Foundation to leverage existing partnerships and assets to broaden awareness and engagement in the Fund.
“The pandemic has exposed and deepened longstanding disparities in health and economic security based on race, income, and geography. Through our partnership with the Seattle Foundation, and through our Community Impact Grant program, the Mariners are embracing our responsibility, and opportunity, to do more to help make our communities more equitable,” said John Stanton, Seattle Mariners Chairman and Managing Partner.
In addition to the Mariners, supporters of the Fund for Inclusive Recovery include the Butler Community Foundation, Delta Dental, DOWL, Raikes Foundation and Umpqua Bank. To date the fund has raised $6 million with a goal of $50 million over the next five years. The fund will begin making grants this summer in the areas of housing, homelessness, education, mental health, food insecurity, criminal justice and more.
Mariners Community Commitments
In July 2020, the Mariners announced a long-term commitment to invest in programs and organizations addressing the issues of racial, social, and economic inequity. Progress on those commitments to date include:
Community Impact Grants – Through a series of Community Impact Grants, the Mariners will invest $1 million in efforts to ensure our communities are places where everyone can thrive. The first grant to be announced is to the Fund for Inclusive Recovery. Additional grant recipients will be announced in the coming months.
Diversity Fellowships – Last week, Seattle University’s Albers School of Business and Economics announced the Mariners and the Seattle Kraken as founding partners in a new program aimed at diversifying leadership in sports and entertainment. The Mariners will offer several paid fellowships and job opportunities for candidates enrolled in the university’s MBA in Sport and Entertainment Management (MBA SEM). Positions will be available in communications, finance, legal, Information Technology and athletic training. The Mariners and Kraken are joined in this effort by the Seattle Storm, Seattle Sounders FC, Seattle Seahawks, Oak View Group and Climate Pledge Arena.
Diverse Business Partners Program – The Mariners have committed to spend at least $2 million each year with minority and BIPOC owned businesses through the team’s Diverse Business Partners Program. Purchases are for items ranging from bobbleheads and t-shirts to paper products, office equipment, cleaning supplies, and more.
Hometown Nine – Through the Hometown Nine program, the Mariners are helping youth from underserved communities continue to play baseball and softball and advance their educations from eighth grade through high school. The Mariners cover the costs of participating in elite baseball and softball programs for participants and provide mentorship, academic, professional and social support to participants. The goal is to help bridge the gap that prevents a more diverse pipeline of players. The first class of Hometown Nine was announced last summer. They will be joined by another group of nine eighth graders in August.