M&T Bank Directs $120,000 to Support Critical Safety Net Programs in Central New York, Mohawk Valley Regions

M&T’s grant funding lifts 12 local nonprofits as they assist the community amid the pandemic

Syracuse, N.Y.; Dec. 23, 2020—M&T Bank announced it has awarded $120,000 to strengthen several critical programs that have been serving thousands of Central New York and Mohawk Valley residents who are experiencing hardships amid the pandemic. With input from its Central New York Directors Advisory Council (CNY DAC), M&T identified 12 nonprofits to receive grant funding intended to expand their impact in the communities they serve.

M&T provided $25,000 grants to four organizations—the Samaritan Center, CNY Diaper Bank, AccessCNY and Catholic Charities of Herkimer County—and awarded $2,500 grants to eight organizations.

“Throughout the pandemic, many of the region’s nonprofits have faced the compounding crises of rising community need and greater difficulties in raising funds and recruiting volunteers. This grant funding will provide some relief and help ensure these organizations remain available and accessible to people in our community who need a place to turn for help,” said M&T Bank Regional President Allen Naples. “I’m grateful to our Directors Advisory Council and our team at M&T who shared their insights into organizations in need of support to preserve their impact.”

To gather additional perspectives into nonprofits responding to pressing needs amid the pandemic, M&T consulted with its CNY DAC, an 11-member council that meets regularly to advise company management on a wide range of local business, client and community matters. Its members—who are business leaders across several industries and deeply involved in the community—helped identify and select a diverse group of organizations to receive funding.

“The pandemic has tested local nonprofits in a big way, making it incredibly important for the business community to step up in response,” said VIP Structures Chief Operating Officer Meg Tidd, a CNY DAC member. “When asked to weigh in with our thoughts on how to maximize the impact of M&T’s grantmaking, we were proud to offer insights into organizations of all sizes that together serve as our region’s safety net, despite the different ways they individually uplift the community.”

“M&T’s grant funding will serve as a welcome boost and a sign of gratitude to these 12 local organizations, which have done life-changing and life-saving work during the pandemic,” said Hancock Estabrook LLP Partner Joseph T. Mancuso, also a CNY DAC member. “Still, there remains so much need in the community, and we all can play a role in addressing it, whether it be through charitable giving, volunteering or providing other support.”

The organizations awarded funding all fulfill important community needs. The Samaritan Center combats hunger and poverty by providing meals 365 days each year— serving over 135,000 meals annually—and connecting people with needed support services. The CNY Diaper Bank works to ensure all families have access to an adequate supply of diapers for their babies and toddlers, as it continues to build an extensive diaper distribution network through existing service providers.


AccessCNY provides person-centered services that empower individuals of all ages and abilities to reach their full potential. It has served individuals with developmental disabilities, people experiencing mental health issues and other vulnerable groups throughout the pandemic. Catholic Charities of Herkimer County, which focuses on addressing basic human needs at all stages of life, has played a critical role in the Mohawk Valley’s response to economic issues exacerbated by the pandemic and recent layoffs at a large local employer.

M&T’s $2,500 grants were directed to smaller and emerging nonprofits that provide an outsized community impact. Grant recipients include:

Over the last 25 years, M&T has invested more than $30 million to support thousands of charitable organizations in the region, and just this past year, its employees reported volunteering 9,000 hours at 150 local organizations.

The bank—which recently opened a new branch in Downtown Syracuse’s Armory Square—has 45 offices and employs nearly 450 people in its Central New York region, covering Onondaga, Cayuga, Oswego, Madison, Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Oneida and Seneca Counties.

M&T Bank Corporation (NYSE:MTB)(“M&T”) 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.

Story cover photo: Samaritan Center Volunteers