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Rich Family Foundation donates to education programs

WBFO file photo by Eileen Buckley

The Rich Family Foundation has made a major donation to benefit education initiatives in Buffalo.  WBFO's Focus on Education Reporter Eileen Buckley says the Foundation is donating $500,000 to the Say Yes Buffalo Scholarship Fund.

“So much of Rich Products is about is centered on our values and one of them is how are we bettering our communities where we live and work,” said Kevin Aman, Communications Director, Rich Family Foundation.

Say Yes is one of four organization to receive funding. An earlier donation of $250,000 was given to Explore & More Children's Museum. The Massachusetts Avenue Project's Farmhouse Community  Training and Resource Center is receiving $200,000 and $50,000 will go to Read to Succeed Buffalo.

Aman said they want to help education programs on the city's west side.

“We just celebrated our 70th year in business and in this neighborhood on the west side of Buffalo. A real common thread, that has always been evident, whether it’s Rich Products or the Rich Family Foundation, is this constant desire for improvement. What can we do better? Not just within our business, but within the community,” explained Aman.

“You know we are very grateful for the investment that the Rich Family Foundation is making,” said David Rust, Executive Director, Say Yes Buffalo.

Rust said some Rich employees serve as mentors to Say Yes scholars -- students who are eligible to go to college tuition free.

“So their employees hold our young people’s hand and help them with college selections and then help them with the questions they have when they get on the campus for the first time. It’s just invaluable and they’re forming life-long relationships. It’s really to help change our scholars lives.”  

"We're absolutely thrilled,” said Anne Ryan, Executive Director, Read to Succeed.

Credit WBFO file photo by Eileen Buckley
Young Buffalo children in the Read to Succeed Buffalo program.

Read to Succeed has a specific program that targets the west side.  Executive director Anne Ryan said Rich wanted to support young learners in their neighborhood.

“So they knew we had a project called CARE, Community Alignment for Reading Excellence. One of the programs under care is a child care quality improvement program with a literacy focus and we gave an overview of all our programs and that’s the one they chose to invest in,” responded Ryan.

“We cannot consider ourselves a success in business if those around us are struggling. We are committed to contributing to positive, substantive change, especially in the lives of those living on the West Side of Buffalo so that new ideas can be nurtured and bright futures may be imagined," said Bob Rich Jr., Chairman, Rich Family Foundation and Rich Products Corporation.

Vice chair of the Rich Family Foundation & Rich Products Mindy Rich stated these organizations share their belief that education offers a "proven and sustainable path to advancement".

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