A prairie baseball league helped bring new baseball equipment to children in Nicaragua.
The Sask-Alta baseball league has teams based out of Saskatchewan and Alberta and has been running since 1951.
Eddie Gergely, the league’s vice-president, was going to visit Little Corn Island this past February when he decided to post to Facebook asking for donations.
“Once I realized how little they had in that country and how passionate they were, it was kind of a no-brainer to throw out the word and see if I could get some donations,” Gergely said.
He said he received a great response, getting around 35 baseball gloves, 25 bats, five sets of cleats, 10 helmets, 50 baseballs and two-and-a-half sets of catcher’s equipment.
While most of the equipment was donated from players within the league, the Zero K Bats Company based out of Quebec donated four brand new wooden bats.
Little Corn Island can only be reached by boat. Gergely said the entire experience was “pretty cool.”
“There’s no roads or anything on that island, just pathways. We were just walking down the path with two hockey bags full of gear and kids were just kind of coming out of the woodwork following us there.”
The kids were eager to grab the equipment from the bags and they played a pick-up game of baseball.
Gergely said the kids had played baseball before but was surprised by the skill of the children.
“We had to tell them to slow it down, they could throw it pretty good for little guys,” Gergely said. “Definitely pretty talented.”
About a third of the gear was given out during the game with the rest being donated to a community organization on the island that will reward the kids who do well with their academics.