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Bend Health and Little League Team Up to Provide Mental Health Support to 2023 Region and World Series Tournament Participants

Press Release




July 20, 2023

Bend Health, Inc. (“Bend”), a leading national, virtual pediatric behavioral care provider, and Little League® International, the world’s largest youth sports organization, today announced a partnership for Bend to provide mental health support services during the 2023 Little League Baseball® and Little League Softball® Region and World Series tournaments this summer.

During the region tournaments, Little League Baseball and Softball participants will have access to Bend’s virtual behavioral health coaches at no cost. Athletes and their families at these tournaments can access coaching online for complimentary care from Bend’s team of professional behavioral health coaches. Little League International will also work with UPMC North Central Pa. to provide mental health support for Little League Baseball World Series participants in Williamsport. Additionally, coaches and parents can access educational materials available by visiting LittleLeague.org/MentalHealth.

“One of the most important aspects of our program that we must continue to consider is the mental health and well-being of our players and coaches, and what we can do to support them,” said Stephen D. Keener, Little League President and Chief Executive Officer. “Through the support of our new friends at Bend Health, our participants will now have access to important mental health support services to feel and play their best, especially during this exciting and hectic tournament season.”

“Sports provide fantastic mental and physical benefits, but young athletes are at risk for their mental health. Performing and competing on an international stage can spark stress and performance anxiety,” said Monika Roots, M.D., co-founder and president, Bend Health. “Virtual counseling with a behavioral health coach can help players build resilience and learn healthy ways to cope with feelings of stress and anxiety.”

Additional information and resources, including how to access these opportunities, will be communicated directly to participating parents and coaches at events where these resources are available. To learn more about the additional resources and tools that Little League has available for all its participants around mental health and well-being, visit LittleLeague.org/MentalHealth.

Founded to help address the National State of Emergency in children’s mental health, Bend supports mental health from sub-acute issues such as stress, sibling rivalry, technology addiction, anxiety, and depression to severe mental illness, including obsessive-compulsive disorder, trauma, and co-occurring substance use. Its collaborative care model combines virtual video visits, chat messaging, and integrated digital experiences to provide skills for kids, teens, and caregivers that support long-term mental health resilience and wellness. Care teams benefit from AI and novel technology that uses measurement-based care to track patient progress.

About Bend Health, Inc.

Bend Health, Inc., a national provider of pediatric mental health care services for children and families, is on a mission to improve access and reduce the cost of high-quality, expert mental health care. Bend is revolutionizing treatment through a novel, data-driven technology platform and evidence-based collaborative care model that enables the first scalable and integrated care solution in mental health. Through coaching, therapy, and faster access to evaluation and treatment by psychiatric experts, Bend achieves better outcomes utilizing measurement-based care and supports happier, healthier kids and families. Bend services are available through partnerships with leading insurers, employers, and health systems, and self-pay. To get started with care or learn more, follow us online: www.BendHealth.com.

About Little League®

Founded in 1939, Little League® is the world’s largest organized youth sports program, with approximately two million players (ages 4-16) playing baseball and softball in communities across every U.S. state and more than 80 other countries. Operated by more than one million volunteers, Little League believes in the power of youth baseball and softball to teach life lessons that build stronger individuals and communities. From professional athletes and award-winning celebrities, to public officials and other influential members of society, Little League graduates have taken the lessons they learned, both on and off the field, to create the next chapter of the Little League story. Each year, millions of people follow the hard work, dedication, and sportsmanship that Little Leaguers® display at our seven baseball and softball World Series events, the premier tournaments in youth sports. For more information, visit LittleLeague.org, and follow Little League (@LittleLeague) on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube. When we all come together, we are truly One Team. One Little League.