iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — A California community has come together to support a youth baseball team from central Mexico after they say their sponsor abandoned them, leaving them with no support for food or transportation during their stay in the U.S.
Assistant Coach Joshua Garcia told ABC News that their sponsor had promised to support them, but the first week they arrived in the U.S., he backed out. Montebello, California has now stepped up to the plate, Garcia said.
“Montebello City is supporting us, we are good,” Garcia said, adding that residents have provided food, money and rides to the games.
Evelyn Morales, a Montebello, California, resident, heard about the team’s predicament when she was at a basketball practice for her kids at the De Paul Evangelization Center, where the baseball team — in town until the end of the month for a summer league — is staying.
“I am a mom first, I have a kid that is the same age as these boys,” Morales told ABC News. “I’d be devastated if nobody helped out.”
Morales posted about the team on the Montebello, California’s Facebook group and community members began commenting asking how they could help out and offering to bring meals or provide transportation. “It just snowballed,” Morales said.
Garcia told ABC News that the 16 boys are in California until the end of July for a summer league. Garcia and his father run a baseball school for underprivileged kids in Aguascalientes, Mexico.
“He is helping kids pursue a dream,” Morales said. “These kids, when you talk to them they’re amazing. I have their parents messaging me from Mexico thanking me for taking care of their sons.”
Maria Contreras, who works at the office of the De Paul Evangelization Center, told ABC News, that “it’s has been overwhelming all these people helping out with Gatorade, water, toothpaste, and all these donations.”
“They’re good kids, very respectful, they’re willing to help with anything. They have a great heart,” Contreras said. “Their dream is to come and play baseball in the United States and the community has come together.”
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