Brandon Beane prides himself on being a competitor.
When it comes to the coronavirus pandemic, the competitor in him wants to bring out the competitor in others to join him in contributing to Covid-19 relief efforts.
The Buffalo Bills' general manager is donating $20,000 to those efforts. He's also teaming with the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County to create a contest in hopes of encouraging others to donate to the recently established WNY Covid-19 Community Response Fund.
"You just see the need out there is so great," Beane said. "And this is going to take a community, so I was trying to think of what are things we can do to bring some excitement behind it, make it a little bit of a competition; that's how I'm wired. It's something for people to be motivated. 'I'm going to compete, I want to get one of these prizes.' So what can we offer that Joe Public, Joe Bills fan maybe would never have the opportunity to experience?"
On Monday, the GM established a sweepstakes, which runs until Friday, April 17, that will award seven randomly selected entrants from the list of donors with one of the following Bills-themed experiences or prizes:
- One winner will join Beane on the phone as he calls in the Bills' first draft pick, which is tentatively scheduled to be made on April 24.
- One winner will participate in an exclusive one-on-one Zoom Q&A with Beane.
- One winner and three guests will have lunch with Beane and receive a tour of the ADPRO Sports Training Center.
- One winner will join Beane at a Bills practice.
- One winner will get four 100-level tickets to the Bills 2020 home opener.
- One winner will receive a collectible Bills helmet autographed by each of the team’s 2020 NFL draft choices.
- One winner will get an autographed Josh Allen jersey.
The date and time of the Q&A, the lunch/tour and practice are to be mutually agreed upon.
Visit wnyresponds.org to make a donation to the WNY Covid-19 Community Response Fund or to find out how to enter the sweepstakes.
"These are things we thought would be unique prizes and (people would say), 'Man, I want to get involved,' " Beane said. "Even if it's $20. It's not a matter of the amount. I'm hoping it will snowball and people will talk about it. Let's see what we can get this donation to."
Established by the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo, Health Foundation for Western and Central New York, the John R. Oishei Foundation and the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County, the fund has brought together more than 20 philanthropic groups (including the Buffalo Bills Foundation and Sabres Foundation) to support the region’s eight counties.
Resources collected through the fund will be allocated to essential organizations such as health, human services, food, child care and front-line responders.