Lawmakers join Nats Park fundraiser for DC kids charity

Lawmakers on Wednesday night pitched in at a baseball-themed fundraiser at Nationals Park, helping to raise money for Washington, D.C., children.

The 11th annual "Home Runs for Horton's Kids" event brought children of all ages and their families to the Major League ballpark. Kids took turns hitting, throwing and fielding and got the opportunity to race Washington Nationals' presidential mascot Teddy, and enjoy other activities throughout the stadium.

The event raised funds for Horton's Kids, a nonprofit group that aims to help children in under-resourced neighborhoods in D.C. The group works with over 500 children in grades K-12 in the Wellington Park neighborhood, offering them mentoring and meals and encouraging young people to graduate from high school and head to college.

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The group has long enjoyed bipartisan support, with Sen. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphyDem senator says Zelensky was 'feeling the pressure' to probe Bidens Lawmakers spar over upcoming Sondland testimony Johnson: Whistleblower 'exposed things that didn't need to be exposed' MORE (D-Conn.), House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.), House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthySaagar Enjeti expresses concern over MSNBC hosting debate after Weinstein scandal Former Speaker Boehner's official portrait unveiled Saagar Enjeti blasts alleged Epstein cover-up by media MORE (R-Calif.), and Reps. Kevin BradyKevin Patrick BradyLawmakers under pressure to pass benefits fix for military families How centrist Dems learned to stop worrying and love impeachment On The Money: Senate passes first spending package as shutdown looms | Treasury moves to roll back Obama rules on offshore tax deals | Trade deal talks manage to weather Trump impeachment storm MORE (R-Texas) and Cheri BustosCheryl (Cheri) Lea BustosThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Pelosi accuses Trump of 'bribery' in Ukraine dealings DCCC adds senior staffers after summer departures DCCC raises more than M in October MORE (D-Ill.) serving as congressional co-chairs, and over 190 lawmakers on its Honorary Host Committee.

Bustos and Clyburn attended Wednesday night's festivities. Bustos said she has been involved since her first term.

“There’s a direct correlation between doing well in school and getting off to a good start and what their success will be later in life. I just want to make sure that we play a role in that,” Bustos told The Hill.

Clyburn praised the group's work.

“I’ve been fortunate to visit Horton’s Kids’ Community Resource Center and see the improvements they’re leaving on children and the Wellington Park neighborhood first hand,” Clyburn said. “From providing more than 10,500 meals to spending countless hours tutoring, they’re preparing children to succeed in college, career and life.”

Robin Berkley, the executive director of Horton's Kids, said that all of the kids finishing the program this year will graduate from high school.

Before becoming executive director, Berkley first was a volunteer for the group, and said she enjoyed seeing the impact it had on kids in the community.

“[Horton’s Kids] gives adults who want to make a difference a really concrete, tangible way to do that,” Berkley said.

“One of the only reservations I had about taking this job was [that] I was very protective of the experience that I had as a volunteer, I didn’t want to lose that," Berkley added. "I easily got as much out of it as the kids did. It really impacted the way that I viewed the world.”