2020 Annual Report

There is strength in numbers — especially when an entire community comes together for the greater good. The year 2020 was undoubtedly marked by challenges, loss and uncertainty. However, Western New York reaffirmed its resilient spirit by responding with urgency, generosity and courage.

Together, we delivered support to every corner of the region. Through partnerships, old and new, our community mobilized and worked to break down long-standing barriers to racial equity. We were truly inspired by the collaborative progress.

In times like these, our gratitude for your partnership cannot be overstated. We hope the stories found within our 2020 Annual Report provide inspiration and optimism as our community continues to move forward together. Some highlights are below.

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Unprecedented crisis, unprecedented collaboration

As a community convener, the Community Foundation rapidly responded with our partners at The John R. Oishei Foundation, Health Foundation for Western and Central New York, United Way of Buffalo and Erie County, Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation and the Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Foundation, to bring together the funding community to stage a coordinated and regional philanthropic response through the WNY COVID-19 Community Response Fund.

Click here to learn about the Fund’s two simultaneous approaches to grantmaking to address the immediate needs in our community and fund solutions to long-term challenges exacerbated by the pandemic. 

A lifetime of giving back

“I love Buffalo — the people, the relationships, the direction, the football team,” remarked Betty Crump. “The Community Foundation has helped me feel even more connected and gives me one point of access to achieve multiple charitable goals.”

While Betty Crump’s love of Buffalo may not be unique, her history of giving is certainly inspiring.  Read her story here.

Championing change

The Buffalo Bills ascended into the national spotlight in 2020 for their incredible play and successful season. Equally impressive was how the team stepped up to support our community during difficult times. 

Learn about how the Bills are driving social change in our community through the Buffalo Bills Social Justice Fund here.

Uniting to advance equity

Voices are being raised louder than ever, and people are listening. With a spotlight on social and racial injustices, we are in a pivotal moment in our nation’s history with an opportunity to accelerate much needed change and close racial equity gaps. In 2020, the Greater Buffalo Racial Equity Roundtable, through its 35 members and more than 250 partners, moved its work forward with increased urgency and intentionality. 

Click here to read about a few highlights of the Roundtable’s 2020 work toward a goal of achieving an expanded, inclusive economy.

Sparking bright futures

When the COVID-19 pandemic shut down physical school locations in March 2020, the education system was tested in unimaginable ways. For children living in low-income households, this community crisis only heightened barriers to educational success. 

Say Yes Buffalo helped lead the way when it came to supporting Buffalo Public School students and their families from the moment the crisis hit our region. Read more here.