BUFFALO – M&T Bank employees loaded thousands of winter clothing items, which were packed into more than 100 boxes into a Salvation Army box truck Friday at One M&T Plaza.
The cold-weather gear was gathered at M&T branches during the annual Gift of Warmth drive, which collects warm clothing for families served by The Salvation Army of Buffalo.
This year, M&T gathered 3,600 winter clothing items, a record-breaking number that exceeded the goal M&T set at the start of the campaign.
Launched in 1985, M&T Bank’s Gift of Warmth drive is the area’s longest running warm clothing collection program for families in need.
From its first days as campaign among M&T employees, it has grown into a community-wide effort that has distributed over 31,600 winter clothing items to children and families in Western New York.
“Every year, the Gift of Warmth drive reinforces why Buffalo is known as the City of Good Neighbors. Because of Western New Yorkers’ generous donations, thousands of children and adults are kept a little warmer during our harsh winters,” said Jim Jarosz, M&T Bank Group Vice President for Retail Banking in Western New York. “We’re grateful to our customers, employees and the entire community for again sharing the Gift of Warmth with neighbors in need.”
M&T branches across Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans and Wyoming counties participated in the nearly seven-week collection this year. The new mittens, gloves, scarves, hats and coats collected during the campaign will be distributed by The Salvation Army of Buffalo.
“Every warm coat, hat or pair of gloves donated will make a difference in the life of one of our neighbors here in Western New York. We extend our gratitude to M&T Bank as well as its employees, customers and all who contributed to the cause,” said Major Steven A. Lopes, Executive Director of The Salvation Army of Buffalo.
“To those who are struggling and may be in need of warm clothing this winter, please contact us or visit one of our facilities. We’re here to help, and we now have new supplies to share,” Lopes added.
To connect with The Salvation Army, visit https://buffalo.salvationarmy.org/.