Brian Miller, an agent with the Long Island GO in New York, volunteers with the League of Yes, (You Experience Success), an organization whose mission is to establish and sustain baseball programs for people of all ages with disabilities to help them develop social skills and increase self-esteem. Brian says, "Seeing the players enjoy playing baseball is so rewarding, and we really believe everyone deserves the chance to play the game. League of Yes helps make that possible."
One player who benefits from participating in the League of Yes is Anthony Dones, who has ties to New York Life though Retail Life, Marketing, Retail Annuities' Patti Wanagaitis. Patti donated her son's umbilical cord blood when he was born, which enabled Anthony to receive a life-saving transplant.
The League plays on two fields, a Suffolk county field in Farmingville, NY, and a Nassau county field in Eisenhower Park in East Meadow, NY. Brian noticed both fields had unenclosed dugouts that weren't offering the players enough protection from the sun and heat, which led to discomfort for players with medical conditions. Brian thought perhaps the New York Life's grant programs could provide funding to purchase a roof so players could sit in the shade.
Brian applied for a Community Impact Grant, a grant program for agents and General Office employees who have a strong relationship with a nonprofit. Due to Brian's strong commitment and his ability to leverage support from his network (other New York Life agents & employees and his family & friends) to support this organization, a $12,000 grant was approved that funded the installation of a galvanized corrugated metal over the top of each dugout.
Paul Smith, $20,000-Helping Hand Home for Children
Robin Wahby, $20,000-Pace Center for Girls Inc.
Jason Demarzo, $20,000-Read to a Child, Inc.
Sherry Barton, $20,000-Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma
Emilie Deery, $20,000-St. Joseph's Center
Zal Sethna, $20,000-The Tristesse Grief Center, Inc.
William Mahoney, $15,000-Children's Harbor, Inc
Marina Parsons, $15,000-Council on Aging Southern California
Suzanne Maybo, $15,000-Seany Foundation
Jeffrey Farmer, $12,500-Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tucson, Inc.
Don Angell, $12,500-Boys & Girls Club of Springfield
Tyler Kruse, $10,000-Big Brothers Big Sisters of Siouxland
Pablo Magdaleno-Carlos, $10,000-Children's Grief Center of El Paso
Mitchell Rosenberg, $10,000-Children's Hospital Los Angeles
Jeanmarie Deliso, $10,000-Community Music School of Springfield Inc.
Robert Fincham Jr, $10,000-Family Access Network Foundation
Kelly Kaneski, $10,000-Serotonin Surge Charities
Oscar Anzaldo, $5,000-Boys & Girls Club of Tracy Inc.
Michael Wecker, $5,000-Gateway Center of Monterey County, Inc.
Bruce Cumby, $5,000-La Salle Academy
Austin Janssen, $5,000-Miracle League of Sioux City
Tim Fitzgerald, $5,000-Shreveport Youth Boxing Club
Karen Hausler, $5,000-United Jewish Federation of Northeastern NY
Judy Blackston, $5,000-Veterans Heart Georgia Inc.
Community Impact Grants (CIG) are corporate responsibility grants that recognize field managers, proactive council agents, and General Office (G.O.) employees in their philanthropic engagement in their local communities. Grants are competitive but very obtainable. Key factors in evaluation include: New York Life applicant's sustained involvement; involvement by applicant's network (other New York Life employees & agents; friends, family and/or clients); the nominated project; budget, sustainability and addressing local needs.
CIG grants are awarded quarterly and range from $5,000 to $25,000 for specific projects and programs. The deadline to submit your application for Q3 is July 15 and Q4 is October 15. Eligible applicants can apply at nylcig.com.
A committee of Agents Advisory Council (AAC) agents, Managing Partners, Advisory Council (MPAC) Managing Partners, and New York Life Foundation, Corporate Communications & Agency staff evaluate each application and determine grant awards.