Poway, Calif.—Little league World Series champs Luke Ramirez and Kiko Garcia are the new faces of an anti-violence campaign being launched to protect youth victims across the nation.
The Park View All-Star hard hitters were in Poway on Saturday to kick off the campaign. The players, along with former Padres' hitting coach Merv Rettenmund, spent some time playing sports with 65 at-risk young people.
The children and teens were hand-picked by the Operation for Hope Foundation here in San Diego.
"It was a dream come true this entire day to see kids play and have fun but also to reach out to kids who have these challenges and let them know that they have someone to call," said founder Kimerberly Weisz, who worked with the California Coalition for Youth to kick off the nationwide campaign.
A new anti-violence poster displays a photo of Ramirez and Garcia along with a hot line number that young people can call for help. Other professional athletes such as Ladanian Tomlinson and Trevor Hoffman have contributed to previous campaigns.
The Little Leaguers say they feel honored to be able to give back to the community.