Senator Kennedy, Say Yes Buffalo Partner with Delaware North to Send Buffalo Students to College Prepared As City-Wide Dorm Room Drive Comes to an End

Hundreds of Items Collected at 20 Drop Off Locations Throughout WNY; Delaware North Steps Up in Big Way, Donating $6,000+ in Gift Cards to Buffalo’s Neediest Students

Annual Drive Assists Say Yes Scholars Facing Daunting Personal Obstacles, Including Homelessness and Extreme Poverty

BUFFALO, NY – Senator Tim Kennedy (D-Buffalo) joined Say Yes Buffalo Executive Director David Rust and Delaware North’s Assistant General Counsel Michael McCabe recently to send Buffalo’s neediest Say Yes scholars off to college fully prepared with essential supplies. The sendoff marked the end of Kennedy’s third annual Dorm Room Drive, which began July 9th and ended August 10th. Kennedy and Say Yes praised the generosity of the community and local businesses, including leadership at Delaware North, who generously donated over $6,000 in gift cards for students. In total, Say Yes says more than 150 students attending Buffalo State, Niagara County Community College, University at Buffalo and SUNY Fredonia who will benefit from these donations. Due to the overwhelming response from the community, they will continue to identify students throughout the school year who need and qualify for assistance.

“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. I can’t thank those enough who made this drive a success, and stepped up to the plate to take care of our city’s children by not only investing in their education, but their futures,” said Senator Tim Kennedy.  “Every student deserves the opportunity to receive a quality education, and with the incredible support of our neighbors, community leaders and local businesses, especially our friends at Delaware North, we are well on our way to ensuring they do so with the resources and tools they need to be prepared and successful.”

“The annual Dorm Drive represents a strong partnership between Senator Kennedy and Say Yes Buffalo that continues to provide outstanding support to our students as they prepare to head off to college,” said David Rust, Say Yes Buffalo Executive Director. “Bolstered by the generous gift from Delaware North, which went to purchasing over $6,000 in gift cards, this year’s Dorm Drive will assist dozens of young people with everyday items they will need to live on campus. We are grateful to Senator Kennedy for leading this initiative that helps meet some of the most basic needs of your bright young people.”

“Say Yes plays an incredibly important role in our community, and Delaware North is proud to support their work,” said Jerry Jacobs, Jr, Delaware North Co-CEO. “With great partners in government like Senator Tim Kennedy, we are confident that this program will continue to create educational opportunities for Buffalo’s amazing students.” 

The drive was launched after discussions between the Senator’s office and Say Yes, which indicated that as some of these students prepare to pursue a higher education, many face extreme poverty. According to Say Yes, approximately 50% of scholars have a combined family income below $25,000, and 70% are below $55,000. Kennedy and Say Yes, along with several community partners, launched the drive in order to help send scholars into their first semesters fully prepared, both inside and outside the classroom.

A full list of the type of essentials collected are 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 included:

  • Senator Tim Kennedy's Office – 2239 South Park Ave.
  • Say Yes Buffalo's Office – 712 Main St.
  • Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes Office – Compass East Building Lobby, 425 Michigan Ave.
  • 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.
    • 690 Kenmore Ave.