Joe Torre On Domestic Abuse: Baseball "Motivated [Me] To Excel"

03/18/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Joe Torre rules the Dodger dugout, but his confidence wasn't always so high. The 55-year-old baseball manager opened up to the Los Angeles Times about the history of domestic violence in his family, his own shyness, and the memory of his abusive father.

His father was forced to leave the family when Torre was only 11, his older brother Frank putting an end to the violence. Today, Torre and his wife Ali aim to educate children about domestic abuse and how to prevent it through the Safe At Home Foundation. The organization provides resources for both children and adults on breaking free of violence and getting help if it's needed.

One of the foundation's most prominent programs is Margaret's Place, which provides a "safe room" in several New York and New Jersey schools for kids to talk about trouble they may be having at home. Named after Torre's mother, Margaret's Place funds teen counseling and teacher training sessions.

From the Los Angeles Times:

Ali is the brains behind the foundation and obviously the beauty as well. She has her focus on L.A. now, and a plan to introduce three safe rooms to schools by September -- a considerable task given the $300,000 price tag that comes attached for each...Each safe room has a professional counselor trained in domestic violence intervention while also serving as a haven, if only a place to read or play..."Our message," Ali says, "is you are not alone, it's not your fault and we're here to help."

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