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ADF Brings MLB Envoy Program to Ghana

In keeping with the African Development Foundation’s vision to use sports as a vehicle of goodwill and development, over 1,200 Ghanaian youths recently participated in a Major League Baseball (MLB) initiative, called the Envoy Program. The program entails sending professional baseball coaches around the world to train children and better organize local baseball federations. 

MLB Envoys, Tony Torchia and Mike Randall conducted an exciting and fun-filled 2-week program, which lasted from September 16th to September 30th. The resulting enthusiasm from the youths created great interest among everyone from parents, to the media, and the Government of Ghana. Radio, newspapers, and television coverage was constant, and ADF President, George Ntim, even arranged for the Envoys to pay a courtesy visit to Ghana’s Vice President, His Excellency Alhaji Aliu Mahama, who expressed the government’s commitment to support future baseball initiatives.

During the program, little league baseball teams in the city of Tema participated in training clinics to refine their fundamentals and techniques of throwing, catching, hitting, and running the bases. Moreover, the Envoy coaches emphasized the importance of being good students, listening to parents, and developing great character. In Accra the program involved visiting primary schools to introduce the game of Tee-Ball to both girls and boys. A listing of the schools is as follows: 

        New Abossey Okai 1 Primary School (Odorkor Road) 

        Airport Police Primary School (37 Licensing Office Area) 

        Rangoon Camp Primary School 1 (Cantonments)

        Rangoon Camp Primary School 2 (Cantonments)

        Ghana International School (Cantonments)

        Osu Presbyterian Preparatory School (Osu)

        Osu Presbyterian Boys Primary School (Osu)

        Sempe 5 Primary School (Mamprobi)

        Sempe 7 Primary School (Mambrobi)

        Aggrey Road 1 and 2 Primary School (Tema)

        Celestial School (Tema)

        Creator School (Tema)

The success of the Envoy Program was directly attributed to the joint involvement and collaboration between the ADF; MLB; the United States Agency for International Development (USAID); Spalding; Adidas; the Ghana Ministry of Education, Science, and Sports; the Ghana Baseball and Softball Association (GHABSA); Irani Brothers; and the Golden Tulip Hotel Accra. 

Dignitaries who attended the Opening and Closing Ceremonies for the program included: the Deputy Minister of Education, Science, and Sports Hon. O.B. Amoah; the U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission, Sue K. Brown; U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission for Liberia, Lou Mazel; the Mayor of Tema, David Q. Annan; USAID Program Officer, Regina Dennis; USAID Regional Controller, Deborah Grieser; Ghana National Director of Sports Development, Dr. E. Owusu-Ansah; CEO of Ghana National Sports Council, Prince Oduro Mensah; GHABSA Chairman, Albert Ocran.

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