ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Annapolis is the latest community to benefit from The Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation’s youth field initiative.
The foundation announced Thursday it has completed a multi-purpose Youth Development Park at Ollie's Bargain Outlet Park at Wiley H. Bates Heritage Park.
The new field will be gifted and maintained by the Boys & Girls Clubs of Annapolis & Anne Arundel County Recreation & Parks, in effort to provide underserved youth with a safe place to learn and play. The Ripken Foundation will work closely with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Annapolis to create and offer programs, including baseball and/or softball themed programs, to engage at-risk young people.
The programs will address a variety of youth development needs, which include character development, health and physical education, and culture and history.
With plans to build 50 fields in five years, the Annapolis facility marks the 22nd Youth Development Park actively in use; there are numerous on-going projects currently in development and fundraising phases throughout the country.
In 2011, Anne Arundel County had an 8.8 percent school suspension rate, compared to a statewide rate of 7 percent, and in 2010, Anne Arundel County had 4,364 juvenile arrests. This is a rate of 806 arrests per 10,000 youth (ages 10-17) is about 15 percent higher than the statewide rate of 697 arrests per 10,000 youth.