Elon, N.C. - In less than a week's time, the "Pinch Hit for Haiti" effort spearheaded by Elon senior catcher Mike Melillo has seen a total of $2,835 donated to the Red Cross towards relief efforts in the island nation which was ravaged by a 7.0 earthquake a week ago today.
As of Tuesday morning's update, schools from 13 different states had donated towards the cause.
A total of 20 different schools were represented. Donations in the name of the Elon total $1,405 while the University of North Carolina checks in with $600 towards the total.
Numerous programs have just returned to campus and coaches have pledged to make donations so the total will continue to rise.
The Sacramento State team held its first-ever Martin Luther King Jr. Day Fundamentals Camp on Monday and has pledged to donated more than $1,200 in proceeds to this effort.
The Elon baseball team has challenged every NCAA collegiate baseball team to donate money to the Red Cross as part of the "Pinch Hit for Haiti" initiative. Fans are also encouraged to make a donation.
After thinking about the amount of money that could be raised if every athlete gave just $1, Melillo came up with the "Pinch Hit for Haiti" concept.
"The idea is to pay it forward because we're not in a situation to physically help," said Melillo. "We want to offer our help in any way we can. Although our donations may be small individually, we feel that collectively as student-athletes our support will be of great assistance."
Last Tuesday's 7.0 earthquake in Haiti has had an effect on nearly 3,000,000 people in the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere. The capital city of Port-au-Prince was nearly leveled and many people are still missing. Estimates have casualties numbering in the 10s of thousands.
WFMY Sports/Elon Sports Information Dept.