Donation will help most vulnerable Western New Yorkers affected by health crisis
FeedMore WNY, formerly the Food Bank of WNY and Meals on Wheels for WNY, announced a $25,000 donation from M&T Bank to support COVID-19 response efforts benefitting local children and older adults.
“The pandemic has disrupted many aspects of our lives, and countless people are depending on FeedMore WNY for food assistance, including our region’s most vulnerable, our youth and our seniors,” said Tara A. Ellis, FeedMore WNY president and CEO. “M&T Bank’s support will help ease the strain we are currently feeling and help us reach more people facing hunger during this difficult time.”
The donation will enable FeedMore WNY to help more youth and older adults – more quickly – by increasing bulk food purchases and delivery for its “BackPack” program and senior grocery services. It also will help cover operating costs for the organization’s annual “Walk Off Hunger” fundraiser, which has gone virtual and will kick off Oct. 3.
“Even in the best of times, hunger and food insecurity is a challenge. The pandemic has made this need even more severe,” said Shelley Drake, M&T Bank regional president. “We’re honored to do a small part to help seniors and families as they try to recover from the difficult financial challenges the pandemic has brought to so many people, especially people already under financial stress.”
On top of the monetary donation, M&T Bank also is pledging to provide in-person support at the organization’s distribution centers. The team has long been volunteering at the food bank warehouse as well as participating in the “Adopt-A-Route” program with its employees volunteering to deliver meals to homebound residents since 2014.
Donating funds to supply food for those in need is just one way M&T Bank has responded during this pandemic, according to Drake: “It was important to us to be an early funder of the WNY COVID-19 Community Response Fund, which provided financial support to over 300 local organizations to address the region’s most critical needs, including food insecurity.”
M&T Bank also donated to aid front line workers at local hospitals in the local fight against COVID-19, as well as to the New York Forward Loan Fund and Open4, two initiatives aimed at providing guidance and support to small businesses and non-profits during these difficult times.
About FeedMore WNY
FeedMore WNY offers dignity, hope and a brighter future by providing nutritious food, friendship and skills training to its Western New York neighbors in need. Through its food bank distribution center and partner hunger-relief agencies, as well as its home-delivered meal program and other targeted feeding programs, FeedMore WNY alleviates hunger and assists community members of all ages throughout Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie and Niagara counties. More information can be found at www.feedmorewny.org.