The rules of the game are simple: two innings, every player bats, every player scores, and every game ends in a tie — there are no losers. The Kiwanis Miracle League program is baseball, but better.
When Jan Burch and others at Kiwanis in Des Moines, a nonprofit that serves children in the community, first envisioned a program that would give children with special needs the opportunity to play on a team, it was just a figment of their imagination. This was back in 2007.
"We envisioned a lot of players, kids with special needs, accomplishing their dreams." Burch, president of Kiwanis in Des Moines, said. "A lot of these kids never thought they could play ball. Most of them have never been on a team."
Initial donations for the program that amounted to one-and-a-half million dollars turned imagination into a successful program that is on its twelfth year, with over 200 registered players and 16 teams.