From the Los Angeles Dodgers front office to players, coaches, broadcasters and the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation, employees filled the Stadium Club and loge level at Dodger Stadium for a Day of Service.
Thursday’s event, the latest in the 2020 Dodgers Love L.A. Community Tour, was in partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Greater Los Angeles (Habitat L.A.) and Project Sunshine. It marked the first time in 17 years of the Dodgers conducting their community week that the entire organization was involved.
“It really is incredible seeing our whole staff come together,” Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said.
“Most of our time and energy in baseball operations is spent on doing everything we can to win as many games as possible and, ultimately, to bring a World Series championship back to Los Angeles. But days like this, off the field where, as an organization, we can all come together and the impact we can make in our community, makes it even more special.”
Upon checking in, each Dodgers employee received a t-shirt that read, “Lead like champions, serve with purpose, inspire our community,” along with a wristband that designated their starting point.
Groups were broken up into assembling activity kids for hospitalized pediatric patients at UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital, while others went to the loge level to begin painting and building playhouses for underserved children.
Austin Barnes joined Friedman, Jaime Jarrín, Roberts and several others in designing playhouses. Roberts quipped he made the mistake of assuming he would hold a managerial role, then happily took a paintbrush and went to turning a wall panel Dodger blue. He later put the finishing touches on the team’s patented ‘LA’ logo.
“All week long, the Dodger players, staff, entire organization, has given back,” Roberts said. “If you look at the greater Los Angeles area, this is the biggest fanbase in all of sports. To know that almost 4 million Dodger fans come through these turnstiles every single year, it’s amazing. For me personally, it’s one of the best weeks of the year.
“The game of baseball as we all know and love, make no mistake, is about the fans. We love the opportunity to play and coach baseball, but we still have a platform to give back. If we’re building homes, interacting with kids or veterans, I think it’s just an opportunity for us to lift people up.”
As part of the program, the Dodgers and Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation awarded a total of $105,000 to the participating nonprofit organizations.
The playhouses built with Habitat LA will be donated to several organizations including A Place Called Home, I Have a Dream Foundation, Para Los Niños, Proyecto Pastoral, Camino Nuevo Charter Academy, Bresee Foundation, LA’s BEST, William Mead Homes, Echo Park Youth Center, El Centro Del Pueblo and the Dream Center.
Project Sunshine funding will support 5,000 activity kits which will be distributed to patients at UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital as part of the Dodgers’ Community Tour.
The Dodgers intend to hold an organization-wide event during their annual community tour moving forward.
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