Mission: To obtain nutritious food and support from public and private sources and efficiently distribute these resources to the hungry in western new york through our member agencies.
Programs: Generous contributions of food products, funds, and volunteer service support the many programs of the food bank of western new york. These programs benefit approximately 326 feeding and education programs in 4 western new york counties (erie, niagara, chautauqua, and cattaraugus), including food pantries, soup kitchens and shelters, after-school programs, senior citizen centers, and other social service centers. Almost 15 million pounds of food and grocery items were distributed to these programs. These agencies receive food from the food bank and distribute it to western new yorkers in need through their pantry and on-site meal programs. Western new yorkers in need come from a variety of backgrounds. These individuals (over 116,821 monthly) and families (over 41,348 households monthly) may be your neighbors, your co-workers, your friends, even your family. Many of them are working poor. Each month they must pay for transportation, housing and utilities in that order and then hope that their already limited resources will cover a month's supply of food for their family. Many of those serviced by our member agencies have recently lost their job through no fault of their own. Others are dealing with overwhelming healthcare expenses. Even natural disasters can play a part in straining an already over-extended income.
agency assistance and operations support - funds received from new york state hunger prevention and nutrition assistance program, private sources and food bank designated board funds provide equipment and operational assistance to affiliated agency programs.
This group helps feed over 96,000 folks in WNY each year. I used to just help my company do can fund drives. However, last year, I was rear ended by a drunk driver, and my whole life was irreparably changed. Having had to rely on others for donations from their food pantries gave new meaning to me. It was indeed a humbling experience. SO, when I had the chance to "give back" to the Food Bank, by helping with a food drive at the Erie County Fair, I decided to take it. It was easy to sign up by e-mail, and a great way to give back to a group that literally made sure I didn't starve. They were easy to work with, and the people I met through it, were very glad to give of their time, as well. We corresponded back and forth by e-mail and they mailed out free parking passes, and a free fair pass (although I needed two, as I was volunteering with another person- so we had to fix that snag before the day).