The New York Lottery has announced a new campaign reminding players of the lottery's core mission: providing aid for education across New York state. As part of this program, the lottery and its advertising agency, DDB New York, created a new television commercial featuring students singing "Thank You For Being A Friend," written by Andrew Gold and made popular as the theme to "The Golden Girls," to unsuspecting people who buy lottery tickets in a convenience store.
To further promote its mission for education, the lottery has launched a statewide contest to provide students with an opportunity to win $10,000, $5,000 or $2,500 to benefit their school's music education program. Named "New York Sings" the contest offers students the opportunity to film themselves singing their own interpretation of "Thank You For Being A Friend."
The top five finalists from all submissions received will have their videos posted on the New York Lottery's Facebook page. The lottery's Facebook fans will select the prizewinners, thus ensuring everyone has the chance to participate through submission or by voting for their favorites.
"We wanted to spread the word of the New York's Lottery's commitment to our mission for education, and what better way to do that than with students thanking New Yorkers who help support their education through the purchase of lottery tickets. The contest is just another way the New York Lottery can give back to schools in our state," said Gardner Gurney, acting director of the division of the lottery.
Since its inception in 1967, the New York Lottery has contributed more than $48 billion in aid to education in New York. In fiscal year 2012-13, the lottery contributed $3.04 billion to local school districts. The lottery's contribution represents 15 percent of total state education aid to local school districts. Still, some New Yorkers are not aware New York Lottery revenue benefits K-12 public schools in the state.
The new initiative will build awareness of New York Lottery's mission by expressing appreciation for the role everyday New Yorkers play in helping to provide billions of dollars each year in lottery aid to education through the purchase of lottery tickets.