Buffalo Bills’ defensive tackle Marcell Dareus recently returned from his humanitarian trip to Haiti and has plenty to share.
As we previously covered, Buffalo Bills‘ defensive tackle Marcell Dareus made a $25,000 donation to Hope for Haiti and planned a trip to Haiti with the organization to see his donation at use. It was a trip that meant a lot to him, noting that Haiti is his father’s homeland.
Dareus has been on a mission to give back since October and has found new inspiration through his involvement with a number of charity organizations, including local Boys & Girls Clubs, YMCA, Veterans One-Stop Center of Western New York, Western New York Heroes Inc. and most recently Hope for Haiti.
During his three-day stay in Haiti, Dareus represented the Buffalo Bills well as he visited two local schools, a care facility and a senior home where he was shown a lot of love. When he arrived at the schools, all the children were wearing captain hats — which were shipped prior to his arrival — and holding up signs. The hats have become a signature with Marcell Dareus, who also handed them out to kids during a Halloween event with the Boys & Girls Clubs.
Dareus had a lot to say about meeting the Haitian children:
"“Meeting the Haitian children touched me the most. I saw myself in them. They helped me remember a time when I was little and my father raised us in the Haitian community in Tampa. We were struggling too. It amazed me they were so happy, polite and grateful, even though they have barely anything. It made me realize again how fortunate I am. When I saw those welcome signs with my name on them, I really couldn’t believe it.”"
At the care facility, Dareus learned in-depth what the current state of health care is in Haiti as he met with several doctors and medical technicians.
Out of the whole trip, one moment stood out the most to Marcell Dareus and it was while visiting the only senior home in the area. It was there that he not only met a 105-year-old Haitian woman, but got the opportunity to sit and pray with her. That moment really touched him.
"“I had no idea this trip was going to be so life-changing for me,” said Dareus.”It felt like an out of body experience, almost like I was watching the trip not from where I was sitting, but like I was looking down on the whole experience. It hit me in so many ways.”"
The three-day trip continues to show the heart Marcell Dareus as he continues to lead by example. He learned a lot and was very thankful of Hope for Haiti, not just for giving him the opportunity, but for everything they do to improve the quality of life in the area.
"“What Hope for Haiti is doing in the Les Cayes area is so inspiring,” Dareus said. “Lots of selfless people who are helping make lives better, caring about those with so little and giving them the supplies and support they really need. It’s amazing what they are doing and it makes me glad that I was able to help their efforts.”"
I’m glad to see Dareus so excited to give back. It’s something we see a lot of in the NFL, but could certainly see more of it.
“I’m going to continue to give back,” said Dareus. “It feels good.”
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