Saffrin cites foundation's commitment to supporting Buffalo's revitalization and opportunities for Western New York's children as reasons for donation.
Explore & More Children's Museum on Monday announced a $1 million capital gift from the Paul A. Saffrin Foundation for the "Play It Forward" capital campaign to build the new museum at Canalside. With groundbreaking set for March, and a planned opening in the second half of 2018, this gift will go toward sponsorship of the "Being Good Neighbors" educational play zone - one of seven - in the planned facility.
The announcement was made during a program Explore & More educators facilitated with fourth-grade students at Eggert Road Elementary School.
"Those of us fortunate enough to call the City of Good Neighbors our home understand the importance of 'Being Good Neighbors.' I can think of no better legacy to leave my children, and all of our children, than the opportunity to discover the world around them and all of the things that make our hometown special," said Paul Saffrin, trustee of the Paul A. Saffrin Foundation.
Terry Tryon, principal of Eggert Road Elementary in Orchard Park, said, "Every year, our students benefit from the hands-on learning experiences that Explore & More provides, either at the museum or right here in our school. Explore & More's programs expand on what our students are learning in the classroom, providing a much richer experience through our partnership than what any school can do on its own."
Douglas Love, CEO of Explore & More, said, "We are excited to be a good neighbor at Canalside, bringing creative, hands-on learning experiences to children and families in Buffalo and from across the region. We feel a great responsibility to be part of the solution for moving the needle on school readiness and achievement for the 50 percent of the city's children who start school at a remedial academic level - while also making a positive impact economically and socially. It's a monumental task, with an even greater impact - and it's good neighbors like Paul Saffrin that are helping to make this dream a reality for Western New York's children."
David McNamara, managing partner of Phillips Lytle, and chairman of Explore & More's capital campaign, said, "Paul Saffrin's generous gift takes the museum two-thirds of the way to their $27 million project goal. This is a game-changing investment in a once-in-a-lifetime project, which will mean so much for the region's children today ... and for generations to come."
Celebrating its 22nd year in operation, Explore & More Children's Museum provides an environment for creative play and learning through hands-on exhibits, activities and programs that inspire creativity, curiosity and imagination.
Explore & More Children's Museum is currently located at 300 Gleed Ave., East Aurora. It will open in the South Aud Block at Canalside on the Buffalo waterfront in the second half of 2018, after breaking ground in March 2017. For more information, visit www.exploreandmore.org or call 716-655-5131, ext. 11.