SISLT HOME OF GIRLS SOFTBALL
“Something happens when girls play sports — they embody the experience of not just of winning, but the critical experience of losing. It’s that process of carrying on and clearing hurdles that really builds confidence. It’s an incredibly useful proving ground for business and leadership.”
~Claire Shipman, television journalist and co-author of The Confidence Code.
Soroptimist International of South Lake Tahoe (SISLT) has been saving for over a decade to fund a legacy major project that fulfills our mission to EMPOWER women and youth. The club members, a diverse volunteer group of community-minded women, have selected the renovation of the softball field at the South Tahoe Middle School at 1066 Lyons Avenue as our major project. Playing softball is an opportunity for girls to IMPROVE SELF-ESTEEM though individual achievement and to learn the importance of cooperation and teamwork. The sport teaches that losing is just the starting point for overcoming adversity, and that success comes from hard work and thoughtful strategy. It has been more than 45 years since any improvements have been made to the softball playing field, with the prospect of change unlikely for years to come without SISLT’s leadership and philanthropy. The existing infield is rutted out, uneven, sinking in the center and its base layer no longer providing support. The existing poorly conditioned softball field is a liability to the athletes for injuries and competitive play. THE GIRLS IN THIS COMMUNITY DESERVE BETTER! SISLT allocated $325,000 to renovate the softball field and provide amenities commensurate with the adjacent boys’ baseball field, with the aim to provide gender parity for the girls’ teams.
Softball Donation Form
Phase 1 $325K Renovations Funded and Administered by SISLT Members: Work slated to begin SPRING 2020
- Surveys, architectural drawings, permits, and site utilities;
- architectural drawings for future score booth and storage;
- site clearing, grubbing, grading, erosion control and re-vegetation;
- renovation of the current parking to a drop-off area with ADA parking;
- paving a pathway to access South Tahoe Middle School parking lot;
- adding a player warm-up area;
- building closed dugouts with benches;
- purchasing large spectator bleachers and scoreboard;
- erecting new fencing for backstop, dugouts, gates and current perimeter to allow fee collection at tournaments; and
- adding site furnishings, for example a PA system, new bases, water fountains, and signage.
Construction will use sustainable strategies. The organic material and asphalt that will be removed will be recycled and erosion control measures will be implemented.
“One of the most awesome things about sports, particularly team sports, is that everything you need to do to be successful on the playing field carries over directly into life. In a team sport you have to learn how to work together, to set goals, and then work towards those goals in a productive way. You learn to be responsible and you learn how to not only depend on others, but also be independent so you can support others.
Sheila Cornell- Douty
High Sierra Girls Softball League
South Tahoe Middle School PE classes
South Tahoe HS Girls Varsity and JV Softball
USA Girls’ Club Softball
USA Adult Softball (Co-ed and Men’s teams)
USA sponsored tournaments
We expect this field renovation to serve over 2,000 youth and adults in our community. Additionally, there is potential for growth as the newer conditions will attract more participation in softball leagues and tournament play.
The positive and empowering messages that softball teaches include:
- What it means to be part of a team. Learning to work with others and to set goals as a group empowers us to achieve more and facilitates the development of leadership skills. It can also inspire us to pay it forward through volunteerism or mentoring others to succeed. Girls will watch women who help women and learn that they help us all.
- It’s okay to make mistakes. Learning how to receive constructive criticism and improve from it helps us to evolve through hard work into our best selves.
- Good sportsmanship is valuable. Learning how to be respectful and fair gives us control over our emotions and keeps us focused on what is important.
- Sometimes you have to fight for it. It’s okay to get dirty and bruised. Confidence comes from staying optimistic and believing in yourself and sometimes believing in the power of the group. When up to bat it is you as an individual doing your best working for the team, but when you return to the field it is back to being stronger as the collective.
- Learning healthy exercise habits to last a lifetime and influence others to do the same through example. Continued physical activity later in life can reduce the risk of anxiety and depression, cancer, osteoporosis, obesity and cardiovascular issues.
“For companies and countries that are serious about wanting to advance more women into leadership roles, you can’t underestimate the role of sport in closing the gender gap,” says Beth Brooke-Marciniak, Ernst Young Global Vice Chair for Public Policy. A 2015 study of 400 female C-suite executives conducted by espnW and Ernst Young found that 94% of women in the C-suite positions had played sports.
FUTURE PHASES CAN ONLY BE ACCOMPLISHED WITH YOUR HELP!
Phase 2 Score Booth and Storage Building
Phase 2 would likely include the addition of a score booth and equipment storage building, for an estimated construction cost of $43K. Funds are not currently available for this construction, but softball practice and games can still occur without it on a usable field with better amenities. The costs for architectural drawings have been included in Phase 1, so that if other funding becomes available from SISLT or another organization, the project is ready to move forward without delay.
Phase 3 Concession Building and Additional Parking
Phase 3 would include upgrades such as a possible shared concession building (softball and baseball), restrooms, programable lighting for the softball field, and additional parking. The expense and scope of Phase 3 would require multiple partnerships to share in the planning and cost. The fundraising for future phases could entail partnerships with the City of South Lake Tahoe, High Sierra Softball League, the Lake Tahoe Unified School District, South Lake Babe Ruth Baseball, USA Club Softball and USA Co-Ed and Men’s Adult Softball Leagues, along with support from the community at large.
Softball is the perfect vehicle for empowering girls with self-reliance, confidence and a sense of belonging. According to CEO Magazine, “Sport offers so much more than just physical benefits. It keeps you mentally healthy, teaches basic social relationship skills, and forges commitment, determination and a competitive mindset.” Proficiency in the sport can lead to academic opportunities and college scholarships. Soroptimist International of South Lake Tahoe cares about the girls in this community and their healthy personal and physical development. Investment in our youth of today will yield dividends as these young women become community leaders of tomorrow.