New Program from Liberty Mutual Insurance Play Positive Renews Spirit of Sportsmanship in Youth Sports

September 08, 2014

30 Youth Sports Teams and Organizations Annually Can Earn $2,500 by Pledging a Commitment to Sportsmanship at PlayPositive.com/Pledge

With schools back in session and fall sports practices across the country underway, Liberty Mutual Insurance looks to shine a new light on the importance of sportsmanship in youth sports.  Liberty Mutual today introduces the Play Positive™ Pledge, an opportunity for youth sports teams and organizations to earn $2,500 for pledging their commitment to sportsmanship.  Now through October 15, communities are challenged to rally parents, coaches, neighbors and others to visit PlayPositive.com/Pledge and pledge their commitment to sportsmanship, with ten organizations earning $2,500 each.  The program will be offered in the winter and spring sports seasons as well, with Liberty Mutual Play Positive awarding 30 youth sports organizations and teams with $2,500 each over the course of the school year.

A recent survey of 2,000 coaches and parents by Liberty Mutual Insurance Play Positive identified a perceived decline in sportsmanship since their days as youth athletes.  Parents and coaches considered “teamwork” and “sportsmanship” the two most important lessons learned through youth sports; yet approximately 50 percent of parents and coaches believe that sportsmanship in youth athletics is worse today than when they participated as children, compared to only 12 percent who feel it has improved.

“As a child actively involved in athletics, sportsmanship was one of the fundamentals that helped shape my youth sports experience and one that I have carried with me into my adult years,” said actor Chris O’Donnell, the Liberty Mutual Insurance Play Positive ambassador.  “Now, as a father of five young athletes, it is apparent there is a need for improved sportsmanship from our kids, coaches and parents.  In a time when poor displays of sportsmanship are showcased in the news, we encourage parents and coaches to take the Play Positive Pledge and affirm their commitment to creating a positive youth sports environment.”

With the survey also indicating that 80 percent of parents play an “active role” in their child’s sports experience, the Play Positive Pledge offers the perfect opportunity for parents and coaches to have a conversation about sportsmanship with their child and lead by example. By taking the Play Positive Pledge and encouraging their communities to do the same, coaches and parents can help renew the spirit of sportsmanship and take an active party in restoring this important life lesson. 
  
Liberty Mutual Play Positive, formerly Liberty Mutual Responsible Sports, has supported youth sports since 2007 with resources, tips, and funding.  More than 250 youth sports teams, organizations and school athletic departments have received nearly $700,000 to help improve the youth sports experience.  This is evident in the ways local teams and youth sports organization have applied the $2,500 they have earned from Liberty Mutual: replacing old uniforms, building or refurbishing a softball field dugout, upgrading torn soccer nets, or providing an opportunity for a child in the community to play a sport his family was otherwise not able to afford.

“At Liberty Mutual Insurance, we know that the fundamentals and life lessons learned at a young age last well into adulthood,” said Anthony Storm, senior vice president and Chief Marketing Officer, Liberty Mutual Personal Insurance.  “We applaud those parents and coaches involved in youth sports, showcasing positivity and sportsmanship every week, and we challenge all to renew their commitment to sportsmanship by taking part in the Play Positive Pledge.”

By visiting PlayPositive.com, parents and coaches can uncover a wide range of resources, tools and information to help children succeed both on and off the field.  Parents and coaches can also take the Play Positive Pledge by visiting PlayPositive.com/Pledge and join the conversation on Facebook by visiting the Play Positive Facebook page.

About Liberty Mutual Insurance Play Positive™

Liberty Mutual Play Positive™ is a community-based program providing resources, tools, tips and advice for volunteer youth sport coaches and sport parents.  Powered by Positive Coaching Alliance, the Play Positive™ program offers parents and coaches constructive tips, expert advice and practical examples to help create a positive sports environment for children.  Liberty Mutual also has provided more than $500,000 in grants to youth sports teams, organizations and schools for community participation in the online Play Positive curriculum.  Liberty Mutual is proud to support youth sports organizations, including ASA Softball, US Youth Soccer, USA Hockey, U.S. Ski & Snowboard Association, USA Softball, U.S. Speedskating, USA Volleyball, USA Water Polo, and USA Wrestling.  To access the Play Positive resources, visit www.PlayPositive.com.

About Liberty Mutual Insurance

Liberty Mutual Insurance helps preserve and protect the things people earn and own and build and cherish.  Keeping this promise means we are there when our policyholders throughout the world need us most.

In business since 1912, and headquartered in Boston, Mass., today Liberty Mutual is a diversified global insurer with operations in 30 countries around the world.  The company is the third largest property and casualty insurer in the U.S. based on 2013 direct premium written as reported by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.  Liberty Mutual also is ranked 76th on the Fortune 100 list of largest corporations in the U.S. based on 2013 revenue.  The company employs over 50,000 people in more than 900 offices throughout the world.

The sixth-largest auto and home insurer in the U.S., Liberty Mutual (libertymutual.com) sells full lines of coverage for automobile, homeowners, valuable possessions, personal liability, and individual life insurance.  The company is an industry leader in affinity partnerships, offering car and home insurance to employees and members of more than 14,000 companies, credit unions, professional associations and alumni groups.

Liberty Mutual Insurance is the Official Property and Casualty and Life Insurance Partner of the 2014 and 2016 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Teams. 

Press Contacts:

Glenn Greenberg     
Liberty Mutual Insurance    
617-574-5874      
glenn.greenberg@libertymutual.com    

Sarah Smedley
Ketchum Sports & Entertainment
212-796-9813
sarah.smedley@ketchum.com

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