MLB Stars Donate to Animal Rescue Foundation

ARF People Connect programs, established by Tony La Russa, educates children about human-animal bond.

Posted: Jan. 19, 2009, 3 a.m. EST

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Camp ARF
Camp ARF students, such as these girls, learn about the human-animal bond through educational activities. Photo courtesy ARF.
Four Major League Baseball players are making it possible for low-income schoolchildren in Contra Costa County to take advantage of two humane education programs offered by Tony La Russa’s Animal Rescue Foundation in Walnut Creek, Calif.

San Francisco Giants pitcher Barry Zito, New York Yankees pitcher C.C. Sabathia and outfielder Nick Swisher, also with the Yankees, along with San Diego Padres pitcher Jake Peavy donated an undisclosed amount to the ARF People Connect programs. The animal welfare charity was founded by Tony La Russa, the St. Louis Cardinals’ manager and former Major League Baseball player.

The grant makes it possible for students to learn about the human-animal bond through educational activities, said Erika Hart, People Connect manager.

The funds will be split in half to provide scholarships for Camp ARF children, and for students to experience ARF’s Learning Center, Hart said. Area schoolchildren will have access to free transportation and field trips to participate in the programs.

The Learning Center is the first interactive museum to be connected to a private animal adoption center. Through hands-on directed play, children learn how to care for animals while also teaching them the importance of responsible pet guardianship.

Camp ARF promotes the value of the human-animal bond and welcomes children and teens for three hours a day for five days in the summer. The goal of ARF programs is to allow people to experience the benefits of dog and cat ownership.

“As a nonprofit organization, we don’t always get opportunities so that we could offer free services for the kids,” Hart said. “To have the baseball players go out of their way to get kids involved is very rewarding.”

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Reader Comments

Ruth    New YorkB, NY

7/10/2013 12:12:48 PM

Wonderful individuals to do what they do. I have a rescue cat from the streets of Queens. Joy of my life.

Sandra    Corydon, IL

1/19/2009 10:39:31 PM


me    trumbull, CT

1/19/2009 10:29:18 PM

thats great

dorcas    cahokia, IL

1/19/2009 8:13:47 PM

i saw this on the news. i think it's a wonderful thing and more people need to realize that animals have both feelings and rights too.

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