Rawlings Joins Youth Football Safety and Helmet Replacement Partnership

New alliance will add new football helmets to underserved communities across U.S.

May 15, 2012, 16:06 ET from Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc.

ST. LOUIS, May 15, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- In an effort to continually educate and protect youth athletes, and enable sports participation in communities across the country, Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc., a subsidiary of Jarden Corporation (NYSE: JAH), announced today its commitment to the newly-formed Youth Football Safety and Helmet Replacement Partnership.

Supported by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Rawlings joins the unprecedented alliance that includes the National Football League, the NFL Players Association, USA Football, the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Athletic Equipment Reconditioners Association (NAERA), the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE), the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association (SGMA) and other football helmet manufacturers.

"As the leader in products that help to protect athletes, we welcome any effort that helps keep young players educated and protected on- and off-the-field," said Robert Parish, president and chief executive officer of St. Louis-based Rawlings. "With a long and storied history rooted in helping to protect athletes, and an uncompromising commitment to developing equipment designed to improve their sport performance and experience, Rawlings is honored to participate in this effort sponsored by the NFL and supported by CPSC to provide underserved youth better equipment."

The initiative will remove helmets that are more than 10 years old and replace them with new helmets at no cost to the beneficiary leagues.  In addition, coaches and administrators will receive educational information from all participating manufacturers to help assist young players with proper equipment fit and to promote playing the game safer.

"Beyond helmet replacement, the opportunity to educate players, parents and coaches to further improve the game is critical to the future of the sport and our business within the game," Parish said. "Even the simple demonstration of properly fitting the Rawlings NRG Quantum youth helmet can make a difference, and we plan on continuing to provide any individual tied to youth sports with in-depth information and resources they need to be better informed and prepared."

USA Football will lead the execution of the program, with an estimated 13,000 helmets available for low-income communities in 2012, starting in July. In addition to the distribution of new helmets, the Partnership will educate thousands of youth football administrators, coaches and parents on a wide array of health, safety and preventative topics, including concussion awareness and response information, helmet fitting guides, better tackling tips and detailed information on football helmet reconditioning and replacement programs.

For more information about Rawlings' line of football helmets and its full line of football equipment, please visit www.RawlingsFootball.com.

About Rawlings

Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc. is a leading manufacturer and marketer of sporting goods in the United States. Founded in 1887, Rawlings is an authentic global sports brand, trusted by generations of athletes, with high-performance products and protective equipment that enable them to perform at their highest level. With an assortment of baseball, basketball, football and softball game-related product lines, Rawlings is present everywhere team sports are played. Leagues and conferences of all skill levels integrate Rawlings' unparalleled product portfolio into their sports: as the Official Batting Helmet and Ball Supplier of Major League Baseball®, the official baseball for the NCAA®, the official football for the NAIA®, the official basketball for the NAIA, NJCAA® and AAU®, and the approved baseball, basketball, football and softball of the National High School Federation®. For more information, please visit www.rawlings.com or by phone at (314) 819-2800.

About Jarden Corporation

Jarden Corporation is a leading provider of a diverse range of consumer products with a portfolio of over 100 trusted, quality brands sold globally. Jarden operates in three primary business segments through a number of well recognized brands, including: Outdoor Solutions: Abu Garcia®, Aero®, Berkley®, Campingaz® and Coleman®, ExOfficio®, Fenwick®, Gulp!®, K2®, Marker®, Marmot®, Mitchell®, Penn®, Rawlings®, Shakespeare®, Stearns®, Stren®, Trilene®, Volkl® and Zoot®; Consumer Solutions: Bionaire®, Crock-Pot®, FoodSaver®, Health o meter®, Holmes®, Mr. Coffee®, Oster®, Patton®, Rival®, Seal-a-Meal®, Sunbeam®, VillaWare® and White Mountain®; and Branded Consumables: Ball®, Bee®, Bernardin®, Bicycle®, Billy Boy®, Crawford®, Diamond®, Dicon®, Fiona®, First Alert®, First Essentials®, Hoyle®, Kerr®, Lehigh®,  Lillo®, Loew Cornell®, Mapa®, NUK®, Pine Mountain®, Quickie®, Spontex® and Tigex®. Headquartered in Rye, N.Y., Jarden ranks #371 on the Fortune 500 and has over 23,000 employees worldwide. For in-depth information about Jarden, please visit www.jarden.com.

SOURCE Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc.