OCEANSIDE — A group of Oceanside residents have banded together to help two local families struggling with the illnesses of their young daughters. The group hopes to gain even more community support through a family-friendly event called Kickball-4-A-Cause, set from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 29 at Ron Ortega Park in Oceanside.
“The event is meant to be a fun and light-hearted way for the community to come together in support of two Oceanside families who are dealing with the unthinkable,” said Dan Hernandez, one of the key organizers of Kickball-4-A-Cause. “All proceeds will be distributed directly to the families to help pay for medical costs and other financial losses they have had to endure because of their tragedies.”
For more information, to sign up to play in Kickball-4-A-Cause, or to donate, visit kickball4acause.com.
Although the families have requested to remain anonymous for the time being, their stories are enough to inspire a whole community to organize and show some serious love and support. The first family received the news last year that their 10-year-old daughter had been diagnosed with leukemia. She has been undergoing chemotherapy treatments since the diagnosis and her parents are struggling not only with medical costs but with time off from work to take her to her treatments and doctor appointments.
The second Oceanside family has a two-year-old daughter who was born with a heart defect. She was scheduled for surgery Aug. 7th to repair valves.
“The toll something like this takes on a family is tremendous and devastating,” said Hernandez. “Anything we can do to help ease the pain we want to do.”
The all-day event will include a Kids’ Zone with a safe and gated area for children and parents. There will be food and games, live music, raffles and, of course, kickball. Kickball teams will consist of 10 players and cost $50 per player or $500 per team. Organizers are hoping for 32 teams that will compete throughout the day for a grand prize and bragging rights. A special grand finale is planned for the closing of the tournament.
“It’s just a fun day for families, groups of friends or even as a team-building exercise for businesses. Create your own team and play all day for a great cause,” said Hernandez. “This is our first event of its kind but we hope to do this every year, each time benefitting a different cause or family. When you see someone struggling, you either turn your back or you do something to help. This group decided to step up to the plate.”