By now it is probably safe to say that most every Americans know about the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, off of the Louisiana coast. This “accident” is also known as the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The spill began on April 20, 2010 and remained uncapped for an astounding 87 days. In the almost 3 month period that the spill lasted an estimated 4.9 million barrels (210 million gallons) of crude oil was leaked into the Gulf. The spill site was not declared sealed until September of 2010, some report that it is still leaking. The impact the spill had on the waters and its life were harrowing. That impact spread to the Gulf residents who make a living largely on the water.
In addition to the damage done to the seafood business, the tourism that the Gulf attracts dwindled as well. The spill had a domino effect that reached every corner and aspect of life in the Gulf and the damage is far from repaired.
Raffled Super Bowl Ring Replica
One of the most dedicated supporters of the Gulf region and those affected by the spill, is the New Orleans Saints. The New Orleans Saints Gulf Coast Renewal Fund benefits the thousands of families affected by the spill, and wildlife renewal in the Gulf. In response immediately following the disaster, the Saints raffled off a Super Bowl ring replica made by Tiffany and Co for $1.4 million dollars, all of which went to the Gulf charity. $500,000 of this raffle money has, reportedly, been given to charities working to alleviate affects of the oil spill.
The Gulf Coast Renewal Fund is one of many worthy causes supported by the Saints. There are four foundations which the Saints advocate; all are headed by players and coaches. Drew Brees, Breesdream foundation was started with his wife for the purpose of raising awareness and money for cancer patients, as well as support scholarship opportunities for teens. Coach Sean Payton heads the Play It Forward Foundation, which strives to raise awareness and support for children in need. His foundation supports victims of domestic violence, people without health insurance, the homeless, and the educational needs of children in poverty. The Dream Big Foundation is player Zach Striff’s baby. His foundation supports mentally and physically disabled children and their families. The foundation provides resources and funds for unique education specific to the child’s disability, or physical therapy that may be necessary.
Finally, The Malcom Jenkins Foundation works to give children of underserved communities opportunities and resources to grow and support their education. This foundation is dedicated to developing strong ethics, and leadership in children, while opening doors to opportunity that would usually pass them by.
In addition to the many charitable resources already mentioned, the Saints have also headed their own recycling program. Their recycling program manages: food waste, Styrofoam, plastic, wood, bathroom waste, electronics and glass. Many schools across Louisiana have partnered with the Saints to implement effective recycling throughout the state. The Saint’s charity repertoire is certainly impressive and progressive, making the Saints one of the most proactively charitable teams in the NFL.