Nonprofit organizations provide much-needed services and funding for many different community needs. Their origins are as varied as their causes.
One such group, the Camper Fund, has its own unique history.
Arizona Diamondbacks Fantasy Camp is one of the best weeks of my year. I’ve been to six D-Backs Fantasy Camps now after missing the first two.
It’s a great week to play baseball and hang-out with former players, coaches and 70 other baseball enthusiasts. A lot comes from the camp, including some of the funniest stories, creative pranks, pulled hamstrings, sore arms, broken bats, incredible camaraderie and even a nonprofit organization.
Back in 2009, a group of campers got together to create The Camper Fund, designed to give back to the community by providing assistance to kids who need financial help to attend D-Backs Baseball Academy camps and to provide funds for other youth baseball initiatives.
“We all love the sport and we saw a way to help through the Camper Fund,” said David Weekly, one of the co-founders. “The actual genesis came following my heart incident and a comment I made at camp the next year about how genuine the support had been from the campers and the D-Backs organization during the time I was in the hospital. ‘Sharing the Fantasy’ was developed as a way of expressing how we felt about this initiative as a group.”
Since its inception, the Camper Fund has raised more than $200,000 through camper donations to the Diamondbacks Foundation, which administers the fund, for these purposes. The Camper Fund has helped hundreds of individuals, made direct contributions to school programs and funded an exchange group of 15 boys to Japan four years ago
Tax-deductible donations to the Camper Fund can be sent to the Arizona Diamondbacks, Outreach and Development, P.O. Box 2095, Phoenix, AZ 85001. Checks should be made payable to the Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation with “Camper Fund — Baseball Outreach” written in the memo line.
If you look, there is much more to baseball than just “safes” and “outs.”