MIAMI – The Miami Dolphins FOOTBALL UNITES™ program, under the Miami Dolphins' "Teamwork At Work" initiative, participated in the 4Ward Americas LGBTI Human Rights Symposium: The Other in Sports luncheon organized to engage and empower South Florida's LGBTI community in an effort to show a unified front between the Miami Dolphins, Gay8 and 4Ward Miami on Monday, Feb. 18.
As part of the Gay 8 Festival, the luncheon featured guest speakers from the Miami Dolphins including former Dolphins Linebacker and Youth Programs Ambassador Twan Russell, Senior Vice President of Communications & Community Affairs Jason Jenkins and Director of Youth Programs Rashauna Hamilton as they discussed how sports organizations can empower all groups in the community and how the Dolphins are engaging with the LGBTI community through Teamwork At Work and FOOTBALL UNITES™.
"4Ward Miami is incredibly grateful that the Miami Dolphins has played such a strong role in supporting the 4Ward Americas Symposium as it has helped us transform an idea into a reality," 4Ward Americas LGBTI Human Rights Symposium Chair Lynare Robbins said. "We're excited that a session facilitated by a youth on a topic about youth with Miami Dolphins leaders who focus their work on youth is taking place. It really is an example of integrity where words and actions match with stated goals."
The Dolphins' involvement and participation in this event is part of the Miami Dolphins social justice and advocacy program, FOOTBALL UNITES™, created by Miami Dolphins Owner Stephen Ross and Miami Dolphins players during the 2017-2018 season. Through FOOTBALL UNITES™, the Dolphins are using sports as a platform to bring positive social change.
These efforts and initiatives align with the Miami Dolphins mission of Teamwork at Work -- an effort to level the playing field through the power of teamwork to inspire a healthier, more educated and united South Florida community. In addition, the organization believes it is important to be inclusive of the diversity and aware of the intersections that make up South Florida, uniting groups of different races, genders, sexual orientations, identities, abilities and faith around the power of football through the FOOTBALL UNITES™ program.
Gay8 ("Gay Ocho") is a Hispanic/Latino LGBTQ art, music, dance, food and cultural street festival in Miami. The mission of 4Ward Miami is to promote LGBTQI diversity & inclusivity, economic status and civil rights through the 4Ward Americas LGBTQI Human Rights Symposium, Gay8 Festival, the ImpactOUT program and other community engagement, human rights and cultural arts programing and events.