On January 19, 2020, in conjunction with the Chiefs home playoff game against the Tennessee Titans, Blue KC and KCFX/Chiefs Radio Network recognized the “C” You in the Major Leagues Foundation (CYITML) as a Here for Good Hero. Foundation Director Matt Fulks served as the CYITML representative.
“We’ve been honored to partner with the ‘C’ You in the Major Leagues Foundation through the Blue KC Coaches with Character program, so we’ve seen up close the kind of impact the foundation is making on our community,” said Christina Lively, Blue KC’s Department Vice President of Marketing and Communications. “CYITML does so much to support Kansas City youth and families, and, as the director, Matt Fulks has been a catalyst for its tremendous impact. We’re very proud to honor the organization as a Blue KC Here for Good Hero.”
In 2014, Royals General Manager Dayton Moore and his wife, Marianne, started CYITML with the goal of supporting education, faith-based programs, youth baseball and families in crisis in Kansas City and the surrounding communities. Shortly after the Royals went to the World Series in 2014, Fulks—a popular author in the area with more than 25 titles to his name—co-authored Moore’s book “More Than A Season.” Later in 2015, Fulks officially joined the foundation and has been serving as director ever since.
“Initially I wanted to join CYITML because of Dayton and his passion to make a difference in this community away from baseball,” said Fulks, who grew up in the Kansas City area and attended Shawnee Mission South High School. “I’ve had the privilege of knowing him since his first day on the job with the Royals in 2006, and it was obvious then how much he cares about people. As someone who grew up in Kansas City with a belief that we’re called to share and serve others, I wanted to do whatever I could to help Dayton with his vision for the foundation. Now we wake up every day with a love and passion to honor our donors and the people we’re serving.”
The main focus of CYITML revolves around character-based leadership with the “C” standing for 10 related “C” words: Care, Character, Coach, Commitment, Competitor, Composure, Comprehension, Concentration, Confidence, Courage. The foundation’s mission is to provide hope and support to children and families while they reach, teach, and develop future character-driven leaders.
Among their strategies are a variety of programs including the C-10 Mentoring & Leadership program, which was launched in August 2018. Through C-10, high school students from greater Kansas City are paired with an adult mentor and meet weekly for life and job skills, educational enhancements, to hear from influencers in our community, and to take part in monthly service projects. This school year, C-10 has 18 students from Kansas and Missouri. The ultimate vision for C-10 is to develop a scholarship program to send students to college or trade school.
“C-10 has the potential to make a generational change for students, particularly as we look at ways to help the participants after high school,” said Fulks. “We hear about the impact from parents, guardians, coaches and teachers. Just this morning we received from a C-10 parent an email that read, ‘We truly appreciate C-10 and the continued support to (the student) and the other young adults. This program has changed (the student’s) outlook on facing obstacles in life.’”
This kind of impact made by CYITML can be felt far and wide in the Kansas City community. In 2019 alone, CYITML volunteers, including the C-10 group, served 536 hours in the KC community, and more than 200 kids received baseball and softball instruction and character lessons, free of charge, at CYITML camps at the Urban Youth Academy.
“Since Dayton and Marianne Moore started ‘C’ You In The Major Leagues in 2014, we’ve been able to grant more than $1 million to 63 organizations to support families in crisis, education, faith-based programs, and youth sports,” said Fulks. “Besides that, though, through the C-10 Mentoring & Leadership program, we’re working to help high school students become leaders in their communities, whether that’s in the classroom, field, court, band room, church or greater Kansas City.”
The Blue KC Here for Good Hero program recognizes strong community partners and the men and women who work or volunteer with those organizations to make Kansas City a better place to live, work and play. Prior to each Chiefs home game, Blue KC selects one honoree to attend the game, while also enjoying the KCFX/Chiefs Radio Network Tailgate Party and a visit to the radio broadcast booth. Blue KC also donates $1,000 to the organization of each honoree.