BUFFALO, NY — Verizon Wireless and the Buffalo Bills will collect used wireless phones to benefit victims of domestic violence at this Sunday's Bills game vs. the Miami Dolphins. Through Verizon Wireless' HopeLineSM program, these phones will be refurbished and recycled or sold. Proceeds will be used to purchase wireless phones for use by domestic violence victims in emergency or threatening situations. HopeLine also makes financial grants to domestic violence organizations.
HopeLine spokesperson, Bills linebacker London Fletcher, encourages fans to bring their no longer used wireless phones to the game and deposit them in collection bins at any of the 10 gates as they enter Ralph Wilson Stadium. The first 1,000 fans to donate a phone will receive a poster featuring Fletcher. Kickoff is at 1:00 p.m. Gates open at 11:30 a.m. Prior to kickoff, the third annual HopeLine Awards Ceremony will take place. The award will acknowledge an individual who has helped to combat domestic violence or assisted victims of this tragedy within their own community. The winner will be presented with a plaque honoring their efforts and $2,500.00 will be donated on behalf of the winner to the domestic violence shelter or program of his/her choice.
"By doing something as simple as donating a wireless phone you no longer use, you can truly make a difference for a victim of domestic violence," said John Palmer, president of Verizon Wireless' Upstate New York Region. "Our main community relations focus is to prevent domestic violence, and we are pleased to have this opportunity to use wireless technology for this important purpose."
"Thousands of women are abused and assaulted every day," said Fletcher. "We know we can count on our fans to help out by simply digging through their closets and donating their no longer used phones to HopeLine, either at the game this Sunday or at Verizon Wireless stores across the state."
Last year, Verizon Wireless and the Bills collected more than 670 phones from Bills fans at the 2003 game day collection.
In addition to benefiting victims of domestic violence, HopeLine provides an environmentally safe method for recycling used phones. Every year 130 million handsets are thrown out, creating 65,000 tons of trash.
Since 2001, the HopeLine program has collected over two million no-longer used wireless phones for the benefit of domestic violence victims and advocacy groups. More information about Verizon Wireless' HopeLine program can be found by visiting www.verizonwireless.com/b2c/aboutUs/communityservice/hopeLine.jsp
About Verizon WirelessVerizon Wireless is the nation's leading provider of wireless communications. The company has the largest nationwide wireless voice and data network and 40.4 million customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com. To receive broadcast-quality video footage of Verizon Wireless operations, log onto www.thenewsmarket.com/verizonwireless.####