Robbed of almost all of its equipment last week, a local girls softball league may soon be ready to swing again thanks to donations from community members and regional organizations.
Last Friday, , including 14 team bags filled with bats, balls, bases, helmets and catcher’s gear. The items were stolen overnight from a storage container at Contempo Park.
The league serves girls ages 4 to 14 and had nearly 200 local youth enrolled last year. The new season is scheduled to kick off in March.
While league officials said last week that the start of the season may have to be pushed back, president Joseph Kan Hai said Thursday that the overwhelming support they’ve received may put them back on schedule.
“We’re getting a lot of equipment donations,” Kan Hai said. “I’m getting phone calls left and right from everybody. We have a lot of people who want to help out.”
According to team parent coordinator and coach Andrea Hernandez, equipment donations have poured in from fellow sports leagues and organizations throughout the Bay Area, including Newark softball and little leagues, the Strike Zone Softball Academy in Fremont and West Coast Sporting Goods in San Leandro, among several others.
“Right now, just in scanning what we have, I saw a lot of chest protectors, shin guards and some loose bats,” Hernandez said.
“We don’t have everything we need, but hopefully with the monetary donations, we’ll be able to pick up the rest,” she added.
According to Hernandez, the softball league had received approximately $1,500 in donations as of Monday night, along with an additional $1,000 donation pledged by the Alameda County Fire Department and a donation from for an undisclosed amount.
Tri-CED will present a check to the Union City Softball Association during tryouts on Jan. 28 at Contempo Park and will also partner with the league for a fundraiser during opening day on March 4, Hernandez said.
Online donations have also come from as far as Chicago and Virginia, she said.
Some local businesses are also doing their part to help out the league.
’s Union City branch is offering free upgrades to customers who prove they have made donations to the Union City Girls Softball Association, according to Joanna Nelson, clinic administrator at the local massage center.
Anyone who purchases an hour massage will receive their choice of an extra 30-minute massage, a deep muscle tissue massage upgrade, a facial or other service upgrade, Nelson said. Customers must provide a receipt of donation.
The offer runs until the end of March.
Nelson said she wanted to encourage donations to the league because she herself was a former player. She was shocked when she heard news of the theft last week.
“It was just pathetic,” Nelson said. “You’re trying to get your gets active and keep them out of trouble. Instead, somebody steals 14 teams worth of equipment. It’s like stealing playground equipment from a school — you just don’t do that.
Donations to the Union City Girls Softball Association can be made online via PayPal through the Union City Girls Softball Association website.
Checks payable to the Union City Girls Softball Association may also be sent to P.O. Box 682, Union City, CA 94587.