After a group of Dolphins alumni and staff returned from the Bahamas this weekend as part of their continuing Hurricane Dorian relief support, Nat Moore explained why it was important for the organization to help out.
"First and foremost, it's the humane thing to do," Moore said Monday. "What they're going through, you wouldn't wish that on anybody. Secondly, this is a country of fans that have supported the Dolphins from their inception. They're season-ticket members, they're watching every weekend. They're a people that live and breathe Dolphins football and the Miami Dolphins are their team. They're the country's team.
"And thirdly, it could have been us. That storm was supposed to hit us. We dodged a bullet. That storm was headed directly for South Florida. The fact that we were blessed and didn't get hit gives us an opportunity to have the ability and the wherewithal to reach out and try to help them."
Moore, the Dolphins Senior Vice President of Special Projects and Alumni Relations, made trips to the Bahamas on Friday and Saturday along with fellow former players Mark Duper, Louis Oliver, Jim Jensen, Shawn Wooden, Troy Drayton, cheerleaders Ashley and Emily, Senior Vice President Jason Jenkins, Senior Director of Community Affair Leslie Nixon, staff members as well as T.D.
The group traveled to Nassau on Friday, and the group visited the Children's Emergency Hostel to deliver supplies, serve food and interact with the youth in residence. They visited a shelter and worked closely with World Central Kitchen to pack meals for those impacted in Abaco along with donating to the relief organization's efforts to providing meals in the wake of natural disasters.
"We were thrilled to have the help of the Miami Dolphins team in the Bahamas," said Tim Kilcoyne, Director of Chef Operations for World Central Kitchen. "Thanks to incredible volunteers like them, we have been able to serve 30,000 meals a day — bringing hot, nutritious meals to those in need out of three kitchens across the islands."
On Saturday, the Dolphins contingent flew to Freeport, where the group traveled with Mission Resolve Foundation and The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to distribute fresh water and relief supplies. The group distributed generators, water and care packages to families in the community and visited with local children.
"On behalf of the Prime Minister, the Government and people of The Bahamas, we are grateful to both the Miami Dolphins organization and the Mission Resolve Foundation for their generous contributions of time and resources in our time of need," said Senator Katherine Smith, NEMA Grand Bahama coordinator. "There is a large and loyal Dolphins fan base on Grand Bahama, so to have Dolphins legends on the island to help out is a boost to morale."
In addition, the team made a financial donation to assist Mission Resolve in these ongoing relief efforts. These efforts followed collection drives that took place at Hard Rock Stadium during the month of September around Dolphins home games and the Brazil vs. Colombia soccer match.
"We can't thank the Miami Dolphins enough for the extraordinary support and leadership they have brought to our Bahamas relief efforts over the past several weeks," said Mission Resolve co-founder Patxi Pastor. "The alumni and staff's deep and genuine compassion for all of the children and families they have profoundly touched through these relief efforts has truly shown the world class and huge-hearted champions the beloved Miami Dolphins represent. The Dolphins have made an extraordinary impact in the Bahamian community and have brought so much joy and hope. We thank the Dolphins from the bottom of our hearts and are truly honored to collaborate with this amazing team."
Moore said what struck him during the two days in the Bahamas was the resiliency of the residents during this difficult time.
"I talked to a gentleman that was 77 years old and he had to swim out of his home, had to swim about a quarter of a mile just to get help," Moore said. "They've never seen anything like it. The best part about the Bahamian people, though, is they bounce back. They're resilient."
Hurricane Dorian hit the Bahamas on Sept. 1 as a Category 5 storm and devastated the country. Moore said people from around the world have lent a helping hand to help the recovery efforts, and the Dolphins certainly have stepped up in a big way.
"My hats off to Steve Ross and Tom Garfinkel for giving us the tools to be able to go over and continue to bring attention to the suffering that's going on."