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200 Badges for Baseball program participants today's guests at the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers Baseball game
APPLETON – Thanks to a generous gift from the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, youth and adult participants of the Badges for Baseball program in the Fox Valley area are today's guests at Fox Cities Stadium. Participants will be joined by Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen, who will throw out the first pitch during the pre-game ceremonies.
Badges for Baseball is a crime prevention program designed to pair law enforcement professionals as mentors and coaches with youth. Public safety partners include volunteers from the Outagamie Sheriff's Department, Appleton Police Department, Grand Chute Police Department, Neenah Police Department, Appleton Fire Department, the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation, and the Wisconsin Department of Justice's Division of Criminal Investigation. The program serves as a positive outlet for youth during out-of-school hours when they are most likely to commit or become victims of crime. Participating youth will learn the basics of baseball/softball while participating in the Foundation's character development program, Healthy Choices, Healthy Children.
The Wisconsin Department of Justice, headed by Van Hollen, awarded the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation $100,000 to support the Milwaukee Badges for Baseball program last year. In addition, the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation provided matching equipment and support to invest more than $200,000 to help Milwaukee's young people most in need. After last year's resounding success, the program has expanded to include the young people most in need in the Fox Valley area.
This summer, kids at community based organizations in the Milwaukee and Appleton areas are learning the basics of the Ripken philosophy, baseball and softball “The Ripken Way.” In addition, the Foundation's character education curriculum Healthy Choices, Healthy Children which integrates lessons such as teamwork, leadership, and respect into situations both on and off the ball field will also be taught.
About the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation
The Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation helps build character and teach critical life lessons to disadvantaged youth through baseball and softball themed programs. Founded in 2001 by members of the Ripken family in memory of their patriarch Cal, Sr., the Foundation works to create programs that positively impact disadvantaged youth through active community partnerships with America's most successful youth service organizations. http://www.ripkenfoundation.org/.
About the Wisconsin Department of Justice
The Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) provides legal advice and representation, criminal investigations, and various law enforcement services for the state.The Department consists of four divisions and one office: The Division of Criminal Investigation, Division of Law Enforcement Services, Division of Legal Services, Division of Management Services and the Office of Crime Victim Services.
Bill Cosh, Communications Officer
WI Department of Justice
Sr. Director of Strategic Initiatives
Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation