Jason Matthews

Auckland resident, Jason Matthews, received $6,000 this funding round, following a special grant of $10,000 in 2016, to continue his dream of becoming a professional major league baseball player in the USA.

The 20-year-old is one of New Zealand’s top young baseball prospects with a junior scholarship at South Eastern Community College, Iowa, USA. But having lost both his parents to cancer when he was six, he struggled financially, with the scholarship only covering half of the costs.

The recent grant will help with Jason’s college accommodation costs which will support him on his way to becoming a professional baseball player.

In just two years Jason has gone from Counties Manukau softball to travelling the world and attracting the attention of international scouts. His most recent achievement was becoming the youngest position player to make the final roster for the NZ Diamondbacks national team that played at the World Baseball Classic Qualifying Tournament in Sydney.