Senator Kennedy & Say Yes Buffalo Kick Off Annual Dorm Supplies Drive for Buffalo’s Neediest Students Heading to College

50% of Say Yes Scholars Come From Families With a Combined Income Below $25,000;  Now in its Third Year, Kennedy’s Dorm Room & School Supplies Drive Assists Say Yes Scholars Facing Extreme Poverty and Homelessness

Drive Runs Through August 10th With 20 Participating Drop Off Locations

BUFFALO, NY – Senator Tim Kennedy (D-Buffalo) and Say Yes Buffalo are kicking off the third year of their “Dorm Room Survival Kit & School Supplies Drive” today, aimed at helping to equip the city’s neediest Say Yes scholars with basic college essentials such as school supplies, laundry, and bedding items. Kennedy partnered with Say Yes to launch the drive in 2016 after learning that despite receiving free access to higher education, many Say Yes scholars struggle to sustain enrollment due to a lack of tools needed to succeed. According to Say Yes, approximately 50% of scholars have a combined family income below $25,000, and 70% are below $55,000, leaving many facing extreme poverty.

Kennedy’s annual drive seeks to address that gap, with the goal of sending scholars into their first semesters fully prepared, both inside and outside the classroom. This year’s drive, which begins Monday, July 9th will run through August 10th, at which time all donations will be distributed to Say Yes graduates in need.

“Every student deserves the opportunity to receive a quality education, and while Say Yes goes above and beyond to arm many of our students with the financial resources in regards to tuition, many cannot afford the basic scholastic and personal care essentials that accompany the pursuit of a higher education,” said Senator Tim Kennedy. “School supplies, bed sheets, laundry detergent, shampoo, and towels- these are the things many of us take for granted when we drop our kids off at college, but these very things could make a world of difference for a student who is homeless or comes from extreme poverty. The City of Buffalo is known as the City of Good Neighbors for a reason: we help our own when they truly have no other way out. Every year we’ve held our Dorm Room Drive, they’ve stepped up in overwhelming numbers to generously donate to our students, and I know this year will be no different.”

"We’re grateful to Senator Kennedy for leading what has become an annual Dorm Drive to support our scholars,” said David Rust, Say Yes Buffalo Executive Director. “Many of the students we serve have basic needs that often go unmet. The supplies donated by generous Western New Yorkers through these drives are incredibly helpful and allow students to stay focused on their studies.”

A full list of the type of essentials needed is included below:

School Supplies  – Pens, pencils, notebooks, folders, binders, USB flash drives, printer paper, index cards, post-it notes, dividers, and a heavy-duty backpack. 

Laundry, Personal Care & Bedding  - Laundry soap, hangers, fabric softener, laundry bag, and laundry basket, sheets and pillows, blankets, toothbrush, toothpaste, shower caddies, body soap.

Participating locations include:

  • Senator Tim Kennedy's Office – 2239 South Park Ave.
  • Say Yes Buffalo's Office – 712 Main St.
  • City Hall 65 Niagara Square.
  • Assemblyman Sean Ryan’s Office – 936 Delaware Ave.
  • Erie County Legislator Barbara Miller-Williams' Office – 427 William St.
  • Rich Products Corporation – 1 Robert Rich Way
  • Cazenovia Neighborhood Library – 155 Cazenovia St.
  • Larkin Square, Main Lobby – 726 Exchange St.
  • North Buffalo Community Center – 203 Sanders Rd.
  • CAO: Masten Resource Center – 1423 Fillmore Ave.
  • Child & Family Services – 844 Delaware Ave.
  • Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church – 400 Northampton St.
  • St. Paul’s Episcopal Church – 4275 Harris Hill Rd.
  • Northwest Savings Bank – 7 locations
    • 1248 Abbott Rd.
    • 3150 Sheridan Dr.
    • 3517 Union Rd.
    • 1531 Niagara Falls Blvd.
    • 364 Connecticut St.

o   690 Kenmore Ave.