NEW YORK — Six organizations that aid survivors of domestic violence are among groups that will receive $50,000 each from Major League Baseball and the players’ association as part of a Healthy Relationships Community Grant initiative.
MLB and the union committed to donating $3 million from their joint charitable fund in seven phases through 2021, they announced Thursday. Other groups receiving money advocate for positive mental health and relationship skills.
Lutheran Settlement House in Philadelphia will use its money for a bilingual domestic violence program; Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center Inc. in Newburyport, Massachusetts, for a children’s safety project; and YWCA of San Diego County for its Becky’s House domestic violence program.
Three of the groups that focus on domestic violence survivors will use the money for general operating expenses: House of Ruth in Pomona, California; Houston Area Women’s Center; and Sanctuary for Families Inc. in New York.
Among the two groups that assist mental health resiliency are International Medical Corps of Los Angeles, which will use the money for its suicide prevention program in Puerto Rico; and HomeFront Inc. in Lawrenceville, New Jersey, which will fund its homeless youth program.
Texas Advocacy Project Inc. in Austin will use the money for its teen outreach program and Good+Foundation Inc. in New York for its breaking the cycle of paternal absence. Both aim to build relationship skills.
Melanie LeGrande, MLB’s vice-president of social responsibility, said more than 150 groups submitted applications, which were due March 1. She said some of the groups had worked previously with foundations of clubs and players.
“This grant-making program is an investment to make sure that we are supporting organizations who are doing the amazing work,” LeGrande said.
The union’s representatives on the joint grants review committee that chose the recipients included Leonor Colon, its senior director of international and domestic player operations; assistant general counsel Bob Lenaghan; former pitcher Javier Vazquez, now an international special assistant in player operations; and Diane Margolin, wife of late union head Michael Weiner.
“We do a lot of joint donations, but this one is probably one that we’ve given most money jointly, on because it is that important and it’s something that we think is going to continue to unfortunately get worse,” Colon said.
MLB did not identify its committee members other than LeGrande.
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