The Cleveland Indians have announced the recipients of $1 million in grants from the Larry Doby Youth Fund.
The fund was created by Indians' manager Terry Francona and the Indians. Team owner Paul Dolan and minority owner John Sherman provided contributions, according to a press release from the Indians.
It is administered by the Cleveland Foundation and the foundation helped review and manage grant proposals with a committee of Cleveland Indians management, Francona and select members of the team, according to the news release.
The 2017 Larry Doby Youth Fund grant recipients are:
America SCORES Cleveland: After--school soccer and journal writing
Negro League Baseball Legends Hall of Fame: League Park Baseball History youth programming
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Cleveland – Bigs in Blue: Mentoring relationships with 4th District police and youth
Big Brothers Big Sisters Clubs of Cleveland: Building bridges between youth and law enforcement
Cleveland Peacemakers Inc.: Mentoring relationships for youth with police officers
Cleveland Police Athletic League: Activities that engage police officers and youth
College Now Greater Cleveland Inc.: College and career advising program for 600 John Adams High School students
East End Neighborhood House Association: My Brother, My Sister Cleveland Chapter – after-school program for 7th and 8th graders
Esperanza Inc.: Mentoring programs
Friends of Breakthrough Schools: Support for 11 high-performing charter schools
Golden Ciphers: Out of school time programs
Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry: Health and crime prevention education programs
Ohio Guidestone: Youth and Police development programming
The NewBridge Cleveland Center for Arts & Technology: After-school youth arts programming
Partnership For A Safer Cleveland: IMPACT 25 Youth Commission
Providence House Inc.: Emergency shelter for children in crisis
University Settlement Inc.: SmartY’s program
Youth Opportunities Unlimited: Summer job program for youth
The Indians organization also donated monies raised from the 2016 Postseason Watch Parties to reach the goal of $1 million raised, the release said. The fund was created to support Northeast Ohio community organizations that provide educational assistance and resources to help curb youth violence, the release noted.
Larry Doby, for whom the fund was named, was the first African-American player in the American League and the second to break the Major League Baseball color barrier. Along with those feats, he was a seven-time All-Star and the first African-American player to hit a home run in the World Series, according to the news release.
“He endured many unfair hardships and challenges, and handled everything with the professionalism and grace that defined him,” Francona said about Doby. “It is in Mr. Doby’s spirit we created The Larry Doby Youth Fund.”
“We are very fortunate to be a part of Major League Baseball,” Francona said, “and we accept the social responsibility that comes with that – to use our resources to directly make an impact on the underserved youth of our community, and to make our community better.”
“The Cleveland Indians organization has demonstrated inspiring generosity and commitment to our community through the personal donations of the entire franchise,” said Ronn Richard, president and CEO of the Cleveland Foundation, in the news release. “Thanks to these hometown champions, $1 million has now been invested in 18 terrific Cleveland nonprofit organizations, all focused on helping our youth thrive and prosper.”
For the Indians, the Larry Doby Youth Fund comes on the heels of decades of support for youth baseball and softball programs in partnership with the Cleveland Metropolitan School District and the Cleveland Baseball Federation, according to the news release.
Along with athletics, the Indians have also supported a variety of educational programs at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Cleveland, according to the news release.