FedEx supports ‘home run’ organization: Turn Two For Youth

When it comes to the game of baseball, hustle and heart set Turn Two For Youth apart, as they strive to bring the game to underprivileged children in poverty-stricken areas. It all started as a grassroots effort when two friends and their families were vacationing in the Turk Islands and Caicos. Billy Owens and Eric Smith were visiting with a youth baseball coach there and saw that his players didn’t have the equipment they needed to play ball. They were sharing torn-up gloves and making do with makeshift equipment. This disheartened the two men and they decided to do something about it.

“Every kid should have their own glove,” said Billy Owens.

When Billy and Eric returned home, they organized a grassroots collection drive in their hometown of Charlotte, NC where baseball families supported the vision with great enthusiasm. Bats, gloves, uniforms, catcher’s equipment, batting tees and an assortment of other baseball necessities were collected at local leagues and schools. Most families were all too happy to clean out their closets. Once the gear was ready to go, Billy and Eric delivered on a promise they made to that coach and shipped a full seaboard container to the Turk Islands.  

That grassroots campaign became the model for a more formal non-profit organization. Turn Two for Youth now collects gear throughout the United States from teams, coaches, players, and families, all who want to give back to the game they love. The equipment is cleaned, refurbished, and then shipped via FedEx to credible organizations for distribution.

Recently, Turn Two for Youth used FedEx to transport youth baseball and softball equipment to coaches and kids participating in the South Andros & Mangrove Cay Baseball League in the Bahamas, where Founders Billy and Eric were on hand to celebrate with the kids. That shipment was followed up by another going to Freeport, Grand Bahama where additional gear was sent to various leagues there and neighboring islands. The shipments included 450 baseball gloves, 530 baseball and softball bats, over 500 pairs of cleats, 260 helmets, 25 sets of catchers gear and several buckets of baseballs and softballs. In total, over 540 kids participating in 6 leagues will receive gear.

“Knowing that these young kids will now be under the mentorship of a coach is the most satisfying part. We learn so much as kids by participating in team sports,” said Eric Smith.  

FedEx delivered these shipments as a part of the company’s FedEx Cares “Delivering for Good” initiative, in which FedEx lends its global network and unparalleled logistics expertise to organizations with mission-critical needs and helps communities before, during, and after crises. Learn more about FedEx Cares Delivering for Good initiative here.

Here’s a short video of Turn Two For Youth packing the South Andros gear.