BUFFALO, N.Y.; July 26, 2018—Buffalo Promise Neighborhood, an M&T Bank led initiative to support educational and economic opportunities in an underserved neighborhood within the City of Buffalo, has announced a $1 million gift from Delaware North in support of its efforts to expand early childhood education on Buffalo’s East Side.
The new partnership between M&T and Delaware North will support the new Buffalo Promise Neighborhood Children’s Academy at Gerard Place, set to open in September. Approximately 100 children will be able to attend the new Children’s Academy, including those who live within the Buffalo Promise Neighborhood service area, have siblings who attend one of the Buffalo Promise Neighborhood schools or if their parents are residents of Gerard Place.
Over the past two decades, Buffalo Promise Neighborhood has worked to transform an economically challenged neighborhood on Buffalo’s East Side into one that can prosper by providing life-changing continuum of “cradle-to-career” services to neighborhood children. Today, the Buffalo Promise Neighborhood includes Westminster Community Charter School, Highgate Heights Elementary School and the original Buffalo Promise Neighborhood Children’s Academy on Bailey Avenue.
“Providing greater opportunities for Buffalo’s children is a shared mission of both Delaware North and the Buffalo Promise Neighborhood,” said David K. Chamberlain, Vice Chairman of the Westminster Foundation and CEO of Buffalo Promise Neighborhood. “This donation will help us make an impact in the lives of more children and families in the community we serve. We greatly appreciate the time, leadership and financial contributions Delaware North has dedicated to our work.”
“We wholeheartedly support late M&T Bank Chairman and CEO Bob Wilmers’ great vision for Buffalo Promise Neighborhood,” said Jeremy M. Jacobs, Chairman of Delaware North. “He believed that meaningful and enduring community development is sustained with the support of local partners, and Delaware North is proud to be a corporate stakeholder in the Children’s Academy at Gerard Place. The heart of our free enterprise system grows from our neighborhoods, so this project is especially timely in our effort to provide educational and economic opportunities for everyone in Buffalo.”
Last July, M&T Bank announced an investment of approximately $1.6 million to renovate the first floor of a building on the Gerard Place campus to serve as the Buffalo Promise Neighborhood Children’s Academy at Gerard Place. Work began in July, and the construction timeline is on track for a September grand opening.
M&T Bank began its involvement in the neighborhood in the early 1990s when the Buffalo-based bank adopted one of the city’s lowest performing schools. Looking to build upon the success at Westminster Community Charter School, M&T Bank led an effort in 2010 to bring the national Promise Neighborhood model to Buffalo.
About Delaware North
Delaware North is one of the largest privately-held hospitality companies in the world. Founded in 1915, Delaware North has global operations at high-profile places such as sports and entertainment venues, national and state parks, destination resorts and restaurants, airports, and regional casinos. Delaware North has annual revenue of $3 billion in the sports, travel hospitality, restaurants and catering, parks, resorts, gaming, and specialty retail industries. Learn more about Delaware North, a global leader in hospitality and food service, at www.delawarenorth.com.
About Buffalo Promise Neighborhood
Founded in 2010, Buffalo Promise Neighborhood (BPN) is the hub of a comprehensive initiative to reverse the cycle of generational poverty in the East Side community of Buffalo, N.Y. It is one of the original five grantees of 330 communities that applied for Promise Neighborhood grants provided through the U.S. Department of Education to ensure that children complete their education and become participants in the 21st-century economy. The effort grew out of a partnership formed in 1993 between M&T Bank and Buffalo Public School #68—a building since rechristened as the Westminster Community Charter School. For more information, visit buffalopromiseneighborhood.org.
About M&T Bank
M&T Bank Corporation is a financial holding company headquartered in Buffalo, New York. M&T’s principal banking subsidiary, M&T Bank, operates banking offices in New York, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Connecticut, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia. Trust-related services are provided by M&T’s Wilmington Trust-affiliated companies and by M&T Bank. © 2017 M&T Bank. Member FDIC.