City of Buffalo Office of Strategic Planning allocated additional $18,000 for "Code Blue"
A total of $123,000 in funding for City Mission: $63,000 for "Code Blue," $60,000 for the shelter
Funding comes on the heels of record-breaking winter season with 42 nights deemed "Code Blue"
On the heels of a record-breaking winter, City of Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, together with the Buffalo City Mission, today announced an $18,000 increase in funding for the agency's "Code Blue" initiative. The program provides critical shelter, clothing and hot meals for anyone living on the streets. It especially targets the 11 percent of those chronically homeless who do not want to reside in shelters and who live in uninhabitable or dangerous places during times of extremely low temperatures and wind chills with no means for finding shelter.
In order to maintain the services the City Mission provides to the chronically homeless population during extreme winter weather, additional funding was needed to compensate the agency for the record number of nights for the 2014-15 winter season when "Code Blue" was in effect.
The City of Buffalo has endured one of the coldest winters in a number of years, and those without shelter are at the greatest risk for winter-related diseases, ailments and death.
"During one of the most severe winters we've seen in Buffalo, the City Mission had 'Code Blue' in effect 42 nights this season," Brown said. "In order to ensure that all homeless citizens of this community have access to the life-saving shelter, clothing and food they need during our most severe weather, the city's office of strategic planning has allocated these critical funds to ensure the mission has the necessary means to continue serving those in our community with the greatest needs."
With the additional $18,000 provided for "Code Blue," total funding for the City Mission provided by the city's office of strategic planning next year increases to $123,000. Of that total, $63,000 is allocated for "Code Blue" and $60,000 is allocated for the shelter. Throughout this past "Code Blue" season, the agency provided more than 6,000 meals and 2,500 safe nights of sleep.
"The City Mission is dedicated to providing adequate protection for not only the homeless, but anyone who is stranded in the cold without the means to find shelter, warm clothing or a hot meal," Buffalo City Mission Executive Director Stuart Harper said. "This has been the most severe winter Buffalo has seen in decades, and we are working harder than ever to answer the call.
"Through the recent extension of funding from Mayor Brown and the City of Buffalo, we will be better equipped to handle the sub-zero temperatures for future winters. We deeply thank the mayor and city officials for recognizing the importance of the 'Code Blue' program."
During "Code Blue" nights, City Mission sends a van throughout the community to pick up those living on the streets or who cannot find their way to shelter. The agency makes additional room at its emergency shelter to accommodate everyone who needs protection from dangerous weather conditions. Hot meals, warm clothing and blankets also are provided.
About the Buffalo City Mission
The Buffalo City Mission, founded in 1917, is a not-for-profit organization that provides preventative, emergency and long-term recovery services to thousands of people who are homeless or impoverished. The agency includes a women's and children's shelter (Cornerstone Manor); the men's community center; the automotive vehicle donation program; and a Dick Road thrift store.
For more information or to partake in a tour of the facilities, visit www.buffalocitymission.org or call 716-854-8181, ext. 431.