New Orleans, LA – United States Marshal
Genny May announced that on Thursday, March 3rd and Friday March 4th, 2011
Deputy United States Marshals (DUSMs) and Task Force Officers (TFOs) from the
Eastern District of Louisiana in New Orleans teamed up with the Cal Ripken, Sr.
Foundation to host a Badges for Baseball camp for over 200 local middle school
students from four schools. The schools that participated in this camp were
Arthur Ashe Charter School, Sophie B. Wright Charter School, James M. Singleton
Charter School, and Samuel J. Green Charter School. The camp was based on a
model of the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation’s overnight camp in Aberdeen, MD, which
the United States Marshals Service has supported since 2009. This was the
first-ever event of its kind to occur outside of Aberdeen, MD. The Eastern
District of Louisiana was thrilled to help launch Badges for Baseball not only
for the city of New Orleans, but also for the entire U.S. Marshals Service.
The DUSMs received valuable assistance and support for this extremely successful
camp from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Park Service Police, the
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, U.S. Secret Service, U.S. Department of
Housing and Urban Development – Office of Inspector General, Louisiana State
Police, Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, Slidell Police Department and
Louisiana National Guard.
The two-day camp was scheduled to be held at the Carrollton-Audubon Batture
Fields in Uptown New Orleans, and was made possible by the Carrolton Boosters
Club. However, on the last day of the camp there were severe thunder storms and
the day’s events almost had to be cancelled until Mr. Tom Benson and the NFL New
Orleans Saints organization graciously opened the doors to their indoor Saints
training facility in Metairie, LA for the campers. This was a great opportunity
for all of the students, some of whom had never been outside of the city limits.
The students were addressed and provided words of encouragement by Mr. Benson
and Saints cornerback Leigh Torrence during their visit.
Upon their arrival to camp students were placed into teams, ran through warm-up
exercises, and rotated through instructional, fundamental baseball skills
stations, which included infield, outfield, hitting, and throwing. At the end of
the day they played actual baseball games and a game called RipKen Quickball.
Most importantly, the participants were given the opportunity to interact with
Deputy U.S. Marshals and other law enforcement officers who served as their
mentors and coaches.
Badges for Baseball is a nation-wide initiative that was created in
collaboration with the U.S. Department of Justice as a juvenile crime prevention
tool. The program aims to enhance the relationship between law enforcement
officers and kids in communities across the country using baseball as the
medium. The program reaches kids at an impressionable age, giving them the
opportunity to see law enforcement officers as mentors, friends, and coaches,
rather than as adversaries.
As part of the program, law enforcement officers become coaches, teaching
important lessons of teamwork, communication, respect, and leadership that apply
to life on and off the field. “What happens in baseball, happens in life!”
Additionally, kids learn the value of a healthy lifestyle, the importance of
setting goals, and how to achieve those goals, such as staying in school, not
joining gangs, and staying away from drugs. As a result of the program, children
and their families are more likely to see their local law enforcement community
as an agent for positive change and safety.
For further information about Badges for Baseball contact the E/LA U.S. Marshals
Service at (504) 589-6079 press 1 or visit the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation’s
website at www.ripkenfoundation.org.
To learn more about the New Orleans Saints visit
www.neworleanssaints.com . To
learn more about the U.S. Marshals Service visit
www.usmarshals.gov and to learn more
about the Eastern District of Louisiana Marshals office visit
America’s Oldest Federal Law Enforcement Agency