Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder and his wife, Tanya, on Tuesday evening were awarded the Charles B. Wang International Children's Award at the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children's annual Hope Awards Dinner at the Ritz-Carlton in Washington, D.C.
The Snyders were recognized for their continued support of the NCMEC, which includes the funding of the construction of the Daniel M. Snyder and Family Communications Center in the D.C. area.
Redskins owner Dan Snyder and his wife, Tanya, were among those honored at the annual National Center for Missing and Exploited Children's Hope Awards Tuesday, May 6, 2014, in Washington, D.C.
Opened in 1999, the Daniel M. Snyder and Family Communications Center fields calls 24 hours a day, 365 days a year from those responding to NCMEC awareness campaigns on behalf of endangered kids.
The Snyders on Tuesday were presented their award by legendary Redskins coach Joe Gibbs.
"I think it's really an honor, and we're very, very touched," Dan Snyder told Larry Michael, the Voice of the Redskins, during a recent tour of the NCMEC Call Center. "For us, this is such an important organization that really needs to be talked about even more, because they do such great work."
The Hope Awards Dinner is an annual celebration honoring individuals, celebrities, media and public figures whose efforts have made the world a safer place for children.
"Dan and Tanya Snyder's support of such a key part of the center's success – our 24/7 Call Center – demonstrates a true commitment to the safety of our nation's most precious resource – our children," John Walsh, the NCMEC's co-founder and long-time "America's Most Wanted" host, said in a media release.
Established in 1984, the NCMEC is a nonprofit organization designated by Congress to serve as the nation's clearinghouse on issues related to missing and sexually exploited children.
Tanya Snyder told Michael she considers the NCMEC to be "a place of hope."
"I am standing strong and proud in here to receive an honor such as this, and to also represent and to be a voice to let people know that there is hope, and to bring light to such a fantastic organization," she said. "It gives everybody the opportunity to see (to) never give up, don't give up hope, and to really pay attention."
According to the NCMEC website, the organization has handled more than 3.8 million calls over the past three decades, leading to the recovery of more than 193,000 missing children. The NCMEC has also trained more than 304,000 law enforcement officers, prosecutors and health care professionals at its Alexandria, Va., headquarters, its branch offices and online.
The NCMEC also has forensic artists that create age-progressed photos and facial and skull reconstructions.
"They're an inspiration," Dan Snyder said of his recent meeting with several NCMEC employees. "The more time you spend and every time you meet someone here, you realize the commitment they make in their lives to this cause."
Tanya Snyder said the NCMEC and its mission is a cause everybody should support.
"No matter who you are as a human being, if you lose your children ... It would be the most devastating thing ever," she said. "This is a place of hope, and we're here to tell you that they do incredible work here."
If you think you have seen a missing child, you can contact the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678). You can also donate to the NCMEC by clicking here.