Perth Heat, one of six teams in the Australian Baseball League, will play 26 games at their home ground this season at Barbagallo Park in Thornlie, starting in November.
Through the Adopt-A-Seat program, businesses make a $350 tax-deductible contribution, which pays to keep a seat available all season for various charities to bring disadvantaged youth and their carers along to games.
Perth Heat assistant general manager Kate Dobie said the program had been set up last year to provide a charitable component to the team and had become one of her favourite parts of the season.
“It’s very equal opportunity, any charity with a need that wants to come and enjoy the baseball, we’re happy to offer the tickets to,” Ms Dobie said.
Last year, Perth Heat hosted kids from organisations including YMCA’s Big Brothers and Big Sisters program, Princess Margaret Hospital for Children, The Smith Family, and Save the Children.
Ms Dobie said the companies that had contributed to Adopt-A-Seat had different reasons for getting involved.
“Some of our corporate supporters joined because of our affiliation with certain charities. Some were baseball supporters so it was an extra opportunity to support baseball here,” Ms Dobie told Business News.
“A lot of our contributors were international, so maybe they’re people who enjoy the Australian Baseball League from afar but cannot come out themselves. So it’s kind of a fun aspect that they still get to support these children with a great night out at the ball park.”
For Knight Piesold Consulting, which has returned as a sponsor this year, Adopt-A-Seat’s direct effect was appealing.
“We particularly liked the idea of providing something directly to the children rather than via an agency, and also that it was a fun thing for children to do that they may not otherwise have been able to do,” financial controller Denise Thomas said.
“Some children have difficult challenges to overcome and to provide a little respite has been our pleasure.”
Adopt-A-Seat also benefits older baseball fans, such as those from ASeTTS, the Association for Services to Torture and Trauma Survivors, and members of the choir made up of homeless adults called Spirit of the Streets.