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Appeal 2022 reaches its goal with over $9.5 million raised

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Catholic Charities of Buffalo announced today that Appeal 2022 in support of Catholic Charities and the Fund for the Faith achieved its $9.5 million goal with a total of $9,562,329.69 in cash and pledges.

Catholic Charities’ Appeal 2022 Leadership Team announce the total amount raised as Catholic Charities of Buffalo closes this year’s annual appeal. Displaying the winning number are co-chair Nancy Nielsen (from left), Vice Chair Adam Sumlin, Community Division Chair Laurie Brown-Croyts-Alford, Parish Division Chair Kevin Gannon and Co-Chair Thomas Beecher Jr. (Photo by Patrick J. Buechi)

“Understanding Western New York’s continuing needs, we set an ambitious goal in January and thanks to the generosity and support of our community and the hard work of our dedicated volunteers and staff, I’m thrilled Appeal 2022 has achieved its goal,” said Deacon Steve Schumer, president and CEO, Catholic Charities. “Your support ensures that Catholic Charities is a constant beacon of hope season after season across nearly every Western New York community.”

“We knew the goal was ambitious at $9.5 million when we set it last January,” said Thomas Beecher Jr., Appeal 2022 co-chair. “Honestly, it’s become more ambitious and more challenging since we set it because the economy hasn’t been entirely cooperative in raising funds. But, we were encouraged and humbled by the generosity of our donors.”

Co-chair Nancy Nielsen, M.D., Ph.D., agreed that the Covid-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine and the economic effects they caused has made the success of this year’s appeal uncertain.

 “When gas costs $5 a gallon, it’s hard to see your neighbors and see their need,” she said. “As you see the tragedy that has affected our neighbors here in the city of Buffalo and has affected all of us, it has been a time of a lot of pain. I just can’t thank the people who helped us get to this point enough. There’s just no way to thank you enough.”

Recognizing strangers in need as your neighbors makes a real impact, Nielsen continued.

“I saw time after time the impact that Catholic Charities makes. I saw the face of Jesus in the face of the people that Catholic Charities helped. I saw the face if Jesus in the people who generously contributed to this campaign.”

Deacon Schumer thanked all those who had donated to the appeal through the past few increasingly difficult years.

“People have asked me, ‘You’ve started in this role at the beginning of the pandemic. What’s it like compared to a regular year?’ I don’t know. I’m looking forward to that. Maybe a couple years down the road to see what that looks like.”

Deacon Steve Schumer, president and CEO of Catholic Charities of Buffalo, flanked by Dan Mecca, corporate division chair, and Laurie Brown-Croyts-Alford, community division chair, thanks this year’s team for the success of Appeal 2022. (Photo by Patrick J. Buechi)

Still, he remains encouraged by the generosity of Western New Yorkers.

“We have nearly 30,000 people who have made a donation to support our work. That tells me that the community is still supporting us. The results tell me that the community is still supporting us. People still really care and they recognize that this is important work that needs to continue. It motivates us all to continue what we do here every day,” Deacon Schumer said.

The annual appeal helps fund 57 programs and services administered by Catholic Charities across Western New York, along with several ministries that benefit all parishes through the Fund for the Faith. Programs and services provided by Catholic Charities, which include basic emergency assistance, mental health counseling, workforce training, youth and family support services, and more, helped more than 125,000 individuals, children, and families in 2021.

For more information on Catholic Charities’ programs and services, visit ccwny.org. If you or someone you know is in need of assistance, visit ccwny.org or call the Helpline at 716-218-1419 to find help and hope through Catholic Charities.

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