For the seventh consecutive year, the Yankees kicked off Hope Week - a week of special events where the members of the Yankees honor individuals and families whose lives give inspiration and are deserving of recognition. Each year since 2009 the Yankees have set aside five days for players to spend time participating in activities that not only recognize a recipient but highlight a cause or a charity and allows them to get some visibility and attention.
On the Today Show, Alex Rodriguez, Brett Gardner, and Dellin Betances surprised Chris Singleton as the first honoree fo 2015. Chris is the son of Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, an Emanuel A.M.E. Church minister from Charleston, S.C., She was one of nine parishioners who was shot and killed in the church shooting on June 17, 2015. In the days after the shooting, he is credited with making public statements in which he forgave the shooter and encouraged others that love is stronger than hate.
HOPE stands for Helping Others Persevere & Excel and is "is rooted in the fundamental belief that acts of goodwill provide hope and encouragement to more than just the recipient of the gesture". Typically several Yankee players will surprise the recipient and then spend the day at some location or function which represents the recipient's accomplishments. At the end of the day, the recipient will usually go to Yankee Stadium where they become honorary members of the team for a day. Earlier tonight, Chris Singleton got to the throw out the first pitch of tonight's game.
All in all, it's a great thing the Yankees' organization does for the community. It has been awarded the President's Volunteer Service Award, but more than that, it draws attention to great things being done in the community. It should be exciting to see who gets named over the next four days.
--Ike Dimitriadis, BYB Senior Staff Writer
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