Members of the Toronto Blue Jays swapped bats for bowling balls at the 3rd annual BaseBOWL Tournament at The Ballroom.
The event, hosted by all-star third baseman Josh Donaldson, raises money for the Jays Care Foundation and Big Brothers Big Sisters – Canada’s leading child and youth mentoring charity.
Donaldson says it’s a cause that means a lot to him.
“In a single-parent home, where I was from, if there was an opportunity like this, I think that would have been pretty awesome”.
Donaldson said he believes in the program which can do a lot of good to some of the city’s most marginalized children and youth.
Big Brothers Big Sisters is all about creating life-changing relationships that inspire and empower children and youth to reach their potential.
“We’re in a privileged situation where we can influence other people’s lives with not only what we do every day but help them financially or with any other type of support”, said Jose Bautista, one of the celebrity participants. “It’s important to me and I know it’s important to Josh as well”.
The partnership between Donaldson and Big Brothers Big Sisters came out of left field. They were pleasantly surprised when he reached out to them three years ago.
According to Joanne Fraraccio, Manager of Volunteer Engagement and Fundraising Events with Big Brothers Big Sister, the involvement of Jays players is crucial.
“There are so many children in this city who can use a positive role model…we have a critical need for male mentors”
For the Jays Care Foundation, the event gets bigger and better every year with this year’s tournament selling out once again.
Last year over 100,000 dollars was raised and organizers hope to surpass that amount this year.