Little League® Launches Campaign to Address Adult Behavior in Youth Sports

Little League® Launches Campaign to Address Adult Behavior in Youth Sports

Little League PSA campaign

win or lose. We just want to play. According to the Aspen Institute Project Play, the average child spends less than three years playing sports and quits by age 11, mostly because the sport just isn’t fun anymore. With the Little League Region and World Series tournaments in full swing, Little League and ESPN have partnered to launch a new PSA (Public Service Announcement) campaign aimed at addressing the increasing behavior of parents and coaches encounter to win at all costs and the negative impact on children who just want to enjoy the sport.

“The vast majority of adults in youth sports are in it for all the right reasons, but we want to use our platform to highlight the negative impact that the behavior of overbearing parents and coaches can have on a child’s youth sports experience,” said Liz DiLullo Brown, Little League senior vice president and chief marketing officer and mother of two. “Our two new PSAs, developed in partnership with ESPN, address this important issue and remind us that children are the primary beneficiaries of a positive youth sporting experience. Little League International is proud of all of the adult volunteers and coaches who make it right on the fields around the world, but it’s time to address directly the need to support our players and their experience when the conduct of creates a negative environment for adults.”

The launch of these two new PSAs, which will air this summer during the 340 Little League games aired on ESPN Family of Networks, coincides with the launch of the new ones Little League Diamond Leader Training Program. The Diamond Leader program was created as part of the Million Coaches Challenge created by the Susan Crown Exchange to educate one million coaches with the goal of improving the youth sporting experience. The Diamond Leader program is a free educational experience for Little League coaches and volunteers. This digital learning experience is focused on providing Little League volunteers with the tools they need to support the social and emotional aspects of youth sports in alignment with the Aspen Institute’s Project Play. That The Little League Diamond Leader program launched as a pilot this summer and is expected to roll out to all Little League volunteers in 2023.

Filmed in the Darien (Conn.) Little League with the league’s players and volunteers participating in the production rather than child actors Story of two carriages PPE (outlook) follows the back and forth of two Little League teams. One coach takes a win-at-all-costs approach while the other focuses on providing a positive gaming experience and showing the impact of these two approaches on their respective Little Leaguers®. That children have enough PPE (outlook) follows a team’s reaction to an opposing player’s father berating him behind the fence.

“We’re proud to have worked with Little League on their commercials over the past few years, and were intrigued when they brought us these ideas for this year’s campaign,” said Geoffrey Bird, ESPN Senior Writer/Producer. “Working with our longtime collaborator Barrett Esposito of Winter Films, we were excited to collaborate on these two pieces which we hope will have a positive impact on improving the youth sports experience.”

The PSA campaign is the latest in Little League’s efforts to continue promoting a player-centric experience across all 6,500 leagues in more than 80 countries around the world. Over the past three years, in addition to launching the new Little League Diamond Leader program, Little League has expanded its free resources Little League University; brought to life Little League Sandlot Fun Days program, an unstructured, player-run gaming facility; improved his girl with game initiative to celebrate women’s participation; and was recognized as Aspen Institute Project Play Champion.

“Countless children are introduced to youth sports through Little League, and the adult volunteers who support this experience have a great responsibility to nurture their love of the game and instill the life lessons that come from participating in the sport said Nina Johnson-Pitt, Little League’s senior strategy executive and mother of three. “Thanks to the support of the Susan Crown Exchange through the Million Coaches Challenge, we are committed to introducing the Little League Diamond Leader program as one of our newest initiatives to provide our volunteers with the support they need while giving back for their children in their community. This PSA campaign is a reminder of the all too real experiences our children are having in youth sports today, and it is more important than ever that Little League lead the way in improving adult behavior on fields and courts around the world.”

To see these new PSAs, tune in to the Little League Baseball and Softball Region and World Series 2022 tournaments on the ESPN family of networks concluding with the all summer long 75th Anniversary of the Little League Baseball World Series on 17.-28. August. For more information, including a full fixture list and TV schedule for each game, visit LittleLeague.org/WorldSeries.

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