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

Win or lose. We just want to play. According to the Aspen Institute Project Play, the average child spends less than three years playing a sport, and quits by age 11, most often because sport just isn’t fun anymore. With the Little League Region and World Series tournaments in full swing, Little League and ESPN have teamed up to launch a new Public Service Announcement (PSA) campaign aimed at combating the rise of the win-win behavior of parents and coaches and the negative impact it has on children who are simply looking to have fun in sport.

“The vast majority of adults in youth sports participate in it for the right reasons, however, we want to use our platform to highlight the negative impact that the behaviors of overbearing parents and coaches can have on youth. a child’s youth sport experience,” said Liz DiLullo. Brown, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of Little League, and mother of two. “Our two new PSAs, created in partnership with ESPN, address this important topic, reminding us that children are the primary beneficiaries of a positive youth sports experience. Little League International is proud that all adults volunteers and caregivers are doing it the right way on pitches around the world, however, it is time to directly address the need to support our players and their experience when adult behavior creates a negative environment.

The launch of these two new PSAs, which will air in all 340 Little League games airing on the ESPN family of networks this summer, coincides with the launch of the new Little League Diamond Facilitator Training Program. Created as part of the Million Coaches Challenge, established by the Susan Crown Exchange to train one million coaches with the aim of improving the sporting experience for young people, the Diamond Leader program is a free educational experience for coaches and volunteers of Little League. This digital learning experience aims to provide Little League volunteers with the tools they need to support the social and emotional aspects of youth sports, in coordination with the Aspen Institute’s Project Play. The The Little League Diamond Leader program launched as a pilot program this summer and is expected to roll out to all Little League volunteers in 2023.

Filmed in Darien, Conn. Little League with league players and volunteers assisting in the production, rather than child actors, the Tale of two coaches PSA (see) 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 player experience, showing the impact both approaches have on their respective little leaguers.®. The The kids have had enough PSA (see) follows a team’s reaction when an opposing player’s father berates him behind the fence.

“We’ve been proud to work with Little League on their PSAs over the past few years, and were intrigued when they presented us with these ideas for this year’s campaign,” said Geoffrey Bird, Writer. / ESPN Senior Producer. “Working with longtime collaborator Barrett Esposito of Winter Films, we were thrilled to partner with these two plays which we hope can have a positive impact on improving the sports experience for young people.”

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 its new Little League Diamond Leader program, Little League has enhanced its free resources on Little League University; brings his life to life Little League Sandlot Fun Days Program, an unstructured player-driven gaming opportunity; improved sound Girls with game initiative, celebrating female participation; and was recognized as a Aspen Institute Project Game Champion.

“Countless children are introduced to youth sports through Little League, and the adult volunteers who support this experience have a great responsibility in fostering their love of the game and instilling the life lessons that arise from participation in sports,” said Nina Johnson-Pitt. , senior Little League strategy manager and mother of three. “With support from the Susan Crown Exchange through the Million Coaches Challenge, we look forward to rolling out the Little League Diamond Leader program as one of our newest initiatives to help provide our volunteers with the support they need, as they give back to their children in their community. This public service campaign speaks to the all-too-real experiences our children have in youth sports today, and it’s more important than ever for Little League to leading the way in improving adult behavior on fields and courts around the world.

To watch these new PSAs, be sure to tune in to the 2022 Little League Baseball and Softball Region Tournaments and World Series on the ESPN Family of Networks throughout the summer, ending with the 75e Little League Baseball World Series Anniversary August 17-28. For more information, including a full match schedule and TV schedule for each match, be sure to visit

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