United by a common goal to help Haiti, 80 volunteers from South Florida’s pro sports teams, businesses and community groups joined Food For The Poor on September 10 to pack more than 14,500 pounds of food to help families devastated by the earthquake one month ago.
More than 1,700 pounds of hygiene items and 384 newborn kits also were packed by the group as they moved to lively music and had fun with the Florida Panthers’ mascot, Stanley C. Panther.
FFTP hosted a Help Haiti Community Collection Event at its warehouse, inviting the public to bring items collected from their own drives and to help the charity organize and sort the items.
Miami Dolphins alum Nat Moore, the team’s Senior Vice President of Special Projects and Alumni Relations, and Jason Jenkins, Senior Vice President of Communications and Community Affairs, packed newborn kits for families in great need.
“My parents always taught me that you treat people and you do for others as you would hope they would do for you in their situation,” Moore said.
“There is a dire need in Haiti,” he added. “This is the right thing to do to get as much help as humanly possible to the folks in Haiti. We haven’t been through an earthquake in South Florida, but I have been through many, many hurricanes and realize if people don’t pitch in and help out, you don’t survive.”
The Florida Panthers brought 10 staff members, along with Stanley C. Panther, to sort goods.
Since the quake, FFTP has secured or delivered 128 truckloads of aid to help families in Haiti, including food, medical supplies, building materials and other supplies.
The charity is consistently sending aid to Haiti as soon as items are dropped off and sorted, said Jisabelle Garcia-Pedroso, FFTP’s Senior Programs Manager for Operations. On average, three 40-foot containers a week are shipped to the charity’s operations in Port-au-Prince, she said.
Representatives from the Miami Marlins delivered about 250 disaster bags with hygiene and first aid items that were packed at a Marlins Day of Service event last Thursday to commemorate 9/11. And volunteers came to FFTP on Friday to help sort items dropped off by other groups.
Evans Adonis, the Marlins’ Director of Sales, said giving back to the community and helping families in Haiti, many of whom have friends and relatives in South Florida, are part of what the Marlins do.
“With Haiti going through so much, it’s important that we do something to give back as much as possible,” Adonis said.
Food For The Poor, one of the largest international relief and development organizations in the nation, does much more than feed millions of hungry children and families living in poverty primarily in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. This interdenominational Christian ministry provides emergency relief assistance, clean water, medicine, educational materials, homes, support for vulnerable children, care for the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance. For more information, please visit www.FoodForThePoor.org.
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