Member for a day: Charity auctions golf club access to help front-line workers

“What can I do to help?’’

How many of us have asked that question of ourselves across the past three months?

It’s a question that undoubtedly has confronted those who’ve been fortunate enough not to have become a part of the frightening statistics associated with the COVID-19 pandemic — whether it’s the millions who’ve contracted it or the tens of millions who’ve lost their jobs as a result of it.

Since mid-March, we’ve watched the nurses and doctors, police, paramedics and firefighters, delivery personnel and grocery store workers carry on with their jobs and wondered what we’d do without their bravery on the front lines.

Last month, I was introduced to Eric Sedransk, a 35-year-old Jersey City resident and avid golfer, and I was humbled by his clever initiative and the simplicity in which he found a way to help with the sport we both have a passion for.

Sedransk created his “Member4aday Auction,’’ using golf as a vehicle to raise important money for the front-line hospital workers in New York City.

He reached out to some of the most prestigious golf courses in the country and asked if they’d be willing to donate a round of golf for a foursome so he could auction it off to benefit COVID-19 relief.

Sedransk raised $101,186 in the week-long auction, which produced 202 percent more than his stated goal.

Eric Sedransk
Eric SedranskEric Sedransk

“I set the goal at $50,000 and, to be honest, I didn’t think I had a chance of getting anywhere near that, but I figured aim high,’’ he said. “I thought I was going to raise maybe $20,000.’’

Every penny of that $101,186 went to Sedransk’s charity of choice, Project Frontline — which was founded by TNT reporter Allie LaForce and her husband, Houston Astros pitcher Joe Smith, to whom Sedransk was introduced by one of the donors to his auction, the Dormie Network. Project Frontline was created by LaForce and Smith to buy meals from restaurants and deliver them to front-line hospital workers.

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LaForce estimated the money Sedransk raised will provide between 10,000 and 12,500 meals to hospital workers in the city.

The genesis of Sedransk’s project is what strikes home the most in that he answered that question nagging many of us: “What can I do to help?’’

While quarantining at his mother’s home in Hilton Head, S.C., where the golf courses never closed during the COVID-19 crisis, he said, “I felt this overwhelming amount of guilt that I was playing golf while my friends and family in New York are battling a pandemic. That drove me to do this like nothing has ever driven me before — trying to figure out ways that I could give back, which ultimately led to this auction.’’

Before he was laid off just before the pandemic hit, Sedransk ran business development and partnerships for tech companies, so that background lent itself to creating an online auction.

Source: New York Post

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