Carlos Dunlap has been named the Week 9 NFLPA Community MVP.
Dunlap was given the award for his on going anti-bullying campaign. He started the campaign earlier this season. What made his campaign interesting was the fact he was going to be doing it during several road games this season, which included last week at Jacksonville. He rewarded students from Charleston with tickets to the game for taking part in the anti-bullying campaign.
This award may sound familiar because Andy Dalton won the award last week. The Bengals are the first team to have two players win the award this season, which is obviously something to be incredibly proud of.
In previous weeks Dunlap has visited Cleveland and Pittsburgh as part of the initiative. Cincinnati has also taken part in his campaign as well. His last city he will be visiting outside of Cincinnati is Baltimore.
Dunlap is having kids read “Malik, The Difference Maker,” which is a children’s book written by a by a local Cincinnati author. He is then having the kids fill out a questionnaire about the book and meet with him to discuss what they have learned about bullying over pizza.
Dunlap commented on the award and why it was important to kickoff this anti-bullying campaign:
“It’s an extreme honor to be named as the NFLPA’s Community MVP,” the Cincinnati Bengals defender said. “My foundation focuses on education, healthy living and being a role model in the community, so along with our school supply drives, breast cancer events and tutoring, our anti-bullying literacy program fits right in with the mission and is very timely.”
When 8-year-old Gabriel Taye committed suicide in January after being bullied at his Cincinnati school, Dunlap saw a need to help eliminate this epidemic. What resulted was a five-city campaign to tackle bullying that has made stops in Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Jacksonville to coincide with the Bengals’ away game schedule.
This isn’t Dunlap’s first charitable undertaking. Through his foundation, he has started programs like Dunlap Scholars, which helps provide ACT and college readiness tools to underprivileged high school kids. He also has partners with Faces Without Places to provide birthday parties for homeless children. He also partners with Boys Hope, Girls Hope and MVK to take under privileged children to sporting events.
It should warm fans hearts that the Bengals have been fortunate enough to have two of our players be acknowledged with this award. It really is bigger than football for Dunlap, and him taking his campaign outside of Cincinnati shows he just shows how much he cares about kids everywhere.
Dunlap will be eligible for the annual Byron “Whizzer” White (BWW) Award, which is the highest honor that the NFLPA can bestow upon a player.
It is especially nice to get these awards during such a bleak season. It really gives fans something to be proud of their team for even if the product on the field isn’t as pleasing right now. Here’s to hoping Dunlap brings home the Byron “Whizzer” Award for Cincinnati and all the children who look up to him.