In February 2019, Team REVO Canada, made up of 12 players and coaches from the Central Ontario Reds and Voyageurs, had the opportunity to travel to Santiago de Rodriguez, Dominican Republic on a humanitarian/baseball trip. Thank you to our sponsors; Ideal Supply, Carline Automotive, Culinary Designs, Dogs and Cats of the Dominican Republic, Tire Discounter Group, Central Ontario Reds, Lions Club of Stayner and Smith Brothers Baseball Central for making this trip possible. The team spent 6 days in a Dominican non-tourist working town training with some ex-professional baseball players and EMI Baseball academy located in the town. Our boys had the opportunity to see where some of their heroes came from and the conditions they trained and lived in.
The boys trained for 5 days total during their trip and played 3 games, winning all three. They met some fantastic role models and competitors. The boys made friends with Yefri (Jeffrey) an 11-yr. old boy that was a shoe-shiner by ‘trade’. Yefri was with the team from the early morning hours to late at night bonding with the boys and showing us all around his town. We even had the opportunity to meet his family and visit their very modest home. A memory our boys will never forget. We have been able to remain in contact with Yefri and some of the ex-players through social media. We truly hope to be able to see them again on another trip.
When the team wasn’t playing ball, they had the opportunity to share some of their good fortune with the less fortunate. The team brought 13 suitcases/ball bags of gear, school supplies, clothing, and daily bathroom necessities to give to those that may not be able to afford to buy their own. We visited a very poor town a few hours away from where we were playing, and the village came to us. The children and moms alike were so thrilled and appreciative of all we could share with them. We also visited a local school where we brought clothing and school supplies for the younger kids. The day continued with a practice at the local field where some of the children were using sticks as bats. Our team handed out some ball gear that will be used at the local diamond. The day was topped off with a true Dominican lunch served by our host’s aunt. What an amazing day!
We all came home after that trip with a realization of how truly lucky we are to live as we do and have access to some of the opportunities we have. It was an eye-opener for players, coaches and adults alike. We would like to thank Yordeny and Sylvia for sharing their town with us and being instrumental in making this trip such a huge success. We’d also like to thank Louis Rodriquez and Sanchez at EMI Academy for all the hard work and passion you shared with all of us. We hope to do it again!!