We flew in March of 2015 to Nicaragua with the express purpose of making our first film about Helping Kids Round First, baseball and the children of Nicaragua.
The first day was spent connecting with our contacts at the Nicaraguan Lutheran Church where Paul and Jay Fishback from Northern Voyage Film company trained youth to use film equipment. We then went on to distributed baseball equipment from communities near the Honduran border all the way to the city of Rivas in the South.
It was on this trip we were worked with Johnny Alvarez, pitching coach for and Dennis Martinez, from the Nicaraguan BB academy. We donated baseball equipment and he in turn provided eager baseball playing kids for the film makers.
The film highlighted on the home page of this website depicts just how important baseball is in the life of children and youth in rural Nicaragua. The sharing of baseball equipment and resources are a key building block to community development and projects. Children are able to learn individual and team skills that enhance their lives and keep them off the streets and away from drugs.
Some children walk up to 3 miles to participate in a game. Much of the equipment is shared between opposing teams and usually very worn out. There are reports that some of the children have no shoes except the cleats that have been donated. If you can imagine walking 3 miles in baseball cleats you understand just how important this game and this equipment is to the kids and the rural communities.
Craig Severtson, Jay and Paul Fishback, Tom Donohue, Jay Bentz were present and committed to furthering the mission of Helping Kids Round First and furthering the agricultural projects that had begun a year earlier. While we were there we visited the Somoto farming communities. Bishop Victoria of the Nicaraguan Lutheran Church, was kind enough to help us make connections and add her own insight on why baseball is so important to the youth in Nicaragua who seldom have the time or opportunity to "just play and be children", when faced with the hardships of everyday life.
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!