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Heavy Hitters softball tournament steps up to the plate

The long-running weekend tournament that supports education has its 36th edition in May

There is nothing better for corporate team building than a little sports. The Heavy Hitters International Charity Softball Tournament provides a chance for companies to hit a double by supporting an educational charity while having a weekend of fun. The next and 36th tournament is scheduled for May 21–22.

Teams still have a chance to enter at the early bird rate until May 5. After that, teams can still register but at the late-riser rate.

The Prague Post Endowment Fund (PPEF), which runs the tournament, is continuing its work, maintaining its motto of “bridging gaps in education.” PPEF has been fairly independent of the Prague Post for some time, and is not affected by that publication suspending operations. Indeed, PPEF has already found a new media partner in Prague.TV.

PPEF also continues to partner with Macmillan Education, a publisher of educational materials, and Anglo-American University, a tertiary school based in Prague.

The semi-annual Heavy Hitters tournament is the main source of funding for PPEF's educational programs. Companies have a chance to help and show their corporate social responsibility by sponsoring a team or donating goods and services for the tournament such as food and beverages.

Some companies have built a long relationship with PPEF through participating in the tournament, but there is always room for more. Sponsors that have been with the tournament for a long time include Bohemia Bagel, Starbucks, Coca-Cola, Canadian Medical Care, and The Globe. 

Companies that help out with Heavy Hitters can have their logos included on promotional material and on the PPEF website.

PPEF has several ways that it supports education. First is a project called SMART, for “skills make ready teachers,” which trains teachers of English. Participating teachers attend courses to help them build their English-teaching skills. The program is accredited by the Ministry of Education and gives teachers new ways to engage students in learning English.

The next way is called Grab the Reader, which provides educational versions of English literature to schools so they can build up a library. The books, also called readers, are aimed at different reading levels for both elementary and secondary schools.

The readers aren't given out randomly. Interested schools have to apply and provide a sample lesson plan to show that the books will be used effectively.

The schools get around 90 books each, and the number of schools that get books is directly dependent on how successful the Heavy Hitters tournament is.

Another project involves subsidizing teachers for hospitalized children. There are gaps in the school year, but for long-term hospitalized children there is little chance to go on vacation. PPEF covers costs of teachers at Thomayer Hospital during the gaps and also supports holiday parties for the children.

Corporate social responsibility is becoming increasingly important as customers are now concerned about the impact that their money has. Companies need to show that they not only provide quality goods or services, but that they also do something to give back to the community. Participating in Heavy Hitters does that, while also providing a platform for letting workers get know one another better and for doing a bit of networking in the local area and across the region. 

Prague Post Endowment Fund (PPEF)

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