By Stuart Harper

I made a decision to try to stop my alcohol and drug addiction and entered a 28 Day rehab facility. I found myself the first night lying in bed wondering if I really had a problem or was this something I have to do to get back in the good graces of my family? I guessed it was a little bit of both. I quickly found out that I was there because I had a real problem and when I figured that out I had never been so scared in my life. For me that was 23 years ago and I have been clean and sober since July 27, 1988. July 27 was also the date of my youngest daughter’s 8th birthday. Can you imagine missing your daughter’s birthday because you were in rehab facility for alcohol and drug addiction? READ MORE...

Sierra Leone Alliance: Picture Page

There are a number of organizations in Western New York that have their hands, their hearts and heads involved in Sierra Leone—this tiny little country half way around the world. We brought everyone together and asked what each was doing and they shared their expertise and the resources they had and how each organization complimented each other, as a result something unique was birthed. This Alliance was formed to say we collectively want to make a difference on behalf of the faith community of Western New York for the betterment of the country and the entire nation of Sierra Leone. READ MORE...

Do Good: Many Hands Make Light Work

Rebuilding lives and homes

By Lisa Littlewood

Tom Splain, 76, is not completely sure how he ended up spending the last fifteen years helping to build homes for those in need. After retiring from more than three decades of work as a high-school teacher in East Aurora, Splain found himself, to put it simply, a bit bored.

   “I had been retired for about six years,” he said, “You need to find some outside interests [after you retire]. I knew I liked this type of work and so I thought I’d try it to see if I would fit in.” READ MORE...

Shop for a Cause

“Macy’s is committed to giving back to our local communities.  Our annual Shop for a Cause Program, which has raised more than $38 million for local and national charities in the past five years, is meaningful for us because it gives our customers and associates an opportunity to give back to the local charities, schools and non-profits that matter a great deal to them,” said Martine Reardon, Macy’s Executive Vice President of Marketing. Macy’s 2011 Shop for a Cause will take place on August 27, 2011, customers can purchase tickets now from The Salvation Army downtown offices. READ MORE...

The Salvation Army

The Salvation Army is in the people business.   What is most fulfilling is that we help people from all walks of life.  It could be someone who just lost their job, or someone who is homeless or lonely or unable to provide for the basics of life.  The Salvation Army is here to help with food, clothing, shelter or prescriptions along with encouragement and the skills to help people become self-sufficient.  If we can’t help them, we can refer them to the appropriate resource or provide them with counseling and direction.  The Salvation Army is usually found in areas with the greatest needs so we can “Do the Most Good”  - not only here in Buffalo, but also in other parts of the USA and around the world.  We currently serve in 124 countries, providing help and hope to those in despair. READ MORE...

Progress: Stories of Hope

By Stuart Harper

Our society pours millions of dollars and thousands of man hours into programs supporting the poor and homeless and we have to ask ourselves, “Are we making any progress?” From my vantage point at the Mission, I say absolutely YES. The reason I can say yes is because I see the progress each day in people’s lives. I was at the market the other day and saw one of our program graduates working. He was explaining to a woman about the difference between two different cuts of meat. I have to admit I felt like a proud father. One year ago this man was unrecognizable to even his own family. His recovery is remarkable. He is living proof that through God anything can happen. READ MORE...


Tops Friendly Markets is giving away 36 cars in 36 days through its recently launched Great American Charity Car Giveaway, a campaign that will allow online users to vote for their favorite not-for-profit organization to win a new vehicle valued at $20,000.

The opportunity for charities to participate is part of Tops’ Great American Car-A-Day Giveaway, a promotion, exclusive to Tops Markets that is running from Memorial Day to the 4th of July and will give away 36 cars in 36 days. This is the first online campaign of its kind by a grocery retailer in Tops’ operating areas. READ MORE...

World Refugee Day

We Are Manna Ministries (WAMM) is hosting a free and open to the public screening of the stunning documentary, "God Grew Tired of Us" tonight from 6-7 followed by a panel discussion, Q & A and refreshments at 895 North Forest on the campus of Zion Dominion Global Ministries in honor of World Refugee Day. READ MORE...

Running for Water

By Josh Ward

“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot. Nothing’s going to get better. It’s not.” (Dr. Seuss)
    Over 250 Western-New Yorkers participated Saturday in Running Water, a charitable 5k/1 mile walk by local organization Let Them LOL to provide clean water in Sierra Leone, Africa. The event was able to raise over $14,320.87 enough to build almost three wells and provide hundreds with clean water, a community here gave selflessly to help a community over there. READ MORE...

National Donut Day

The Salvation Army Buffalo is celebrating the 73nd annual National Donut Day today so if you can justify breaking the diet and allow that sticky, chewy, sugary pleasure, know it’s all for a great cause. 

The Salvation Army is widely credited with popularizing the donut in the United States by feeding American soldiers the tasty confection during World War I.  READ MORE...

DO GOOD: Run for Water

Let them LOL (Laugh Out Loud) a Buffalo based humanitarian organization has organized a 5k/1 mile run to provide clean water to struggling communities in Sierra Leone, Africa. Accoring to let the LOL's research 40 billion hours per year are spent walking to find water by the people of Sierra Leone and the majority of the water is not safe for drinking, yet they have no choice. Every $5 dollars raised, READ MORE...


“I get excited on days like today to know that yet another 64 at risk young people in Western New York will get the opportunity to learn and grow their skills while improving Buffalo’s housing stock.  In a federal budget where YouthBuild funding was cut by over 50% this year, this announcement says to me that we continue to do it the right way,” said Western New York Americorps interim Executive Director Kate Sarata when announcing their $1,087,819 grant with Congressman Brian Higgins earlier this week. The program being funded, YouthBuild assists young people obtain their diplomas or GEDs while providing occupational training in the construction industry. READ MORE...

Violence, Crime, and Poverty

Solutions for a Brighter Future.

By Stuart Harper

When contemplating the struggle our city faces with violence, crime and poverty there is ultimately only one way we will ever be able to overcome these challenges. Unfortunately, often times the nature of man drives us from the solution not towards it. Our egos, our politics, our prejudice, our violent history towards one another all drive us further from the solution. Faith in Jesus Christ and us earnestly asking for his intervention in our lives personally and as a community, I believe, is the only solution that will work because his solution will bear none of these maladies. READ MORE...

West Side Stories

International refugees are an vital part of Buffalo’s West Side. Jericho Road Ministries is making a difference.

By Lisa Littlewood

When you walk through the front door of 233 West Ferry Street on Buffalo’s West Side for the first time you might experience a moment of culture shock. Women and men of varying ethnicities-- Burmese, Somali, Burundi, Congolese, Sudanese, Cuban, Ethiopian and Iraqi, to name a few-- crowd into the front room as they wait their turn for assistance from one of several case workers.

     The clients, speaking even more languages than the ethnicities represented, are hoping for help with any number of tasks and issues. One client needs help reading her mail, another needs to set up a doctor’s appointment, another needs help filling out food stamp paperwork and another needs transport and translation for, READ MORE...


United Way Raises Over $13 million

The United Way of Buffalo & Erie County announced Friday that it raised $13,303,633 in pledges for its 2010 Campaign, an increase of $27,118 over the organization’s 2009 Campaign result of $13,276,515. This result marks the organization’s first year-over-year increase since the 2001 Campaign. READ MORE...

Salvation Army Responds

By AnnMarie Taft

The Salvation Army in Japan has just sent updates on our three emergency teams at work. The Japanese Government has recognized The Salvation Army’s work and has given our teams permission to enter the disaster area and use access roads that are closed off to the public.

 The first of the three teams went to Sendai, where about 1,000 meals were served to evacuees. Our mobile emergency canteen prepared hot meals and drinks to give out at the Sendai Salvation Army church.  Another team went to a relief office in the Mito area and unloaded bottles of water, biscuits, blankets, diapers and tissue boxes for distribution to evacuees.  The third team headed to an area where people had been evacuated from the vicinity around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station, but snow and shortage of petrol meant they had to divert to other areas to support evacuees.

 The Salvation Army’s Korea Territory has arranged for the K-Water Corporation to provide 100,000 bottles of water to be sent to Japan – 30,000 bottles by the end of the week, followed by the rest within a short time – and the Korea Disaster Relief Association will be sending 5,000 first-aid kits. Salvationists in Korea are holding a month of prayer for the people of Japan.

In a touching show of solidarity 1,500 young Salvationists in Haiti – who themselves have recent experience of a devastating earthquake – made prayer for Japan a focus of their rally in Fond-des-Nègres on March 11-12.

If you’d like to support The Salvation Army’s Japan relief efforts, you can do so in the following ways:

  • Donate online at
  • Call 1-800-SAL-ARMY
  • Text the words “Japan” or “Quake” to 80888 to make a $10 donation. (Please ensure that you respond “YES” to the Thank You message you receive.)
  • By mail: Send your check, marked “Japan earthquake relief” to

The Salvation Army World Service Office, International Relief Fund, PO Box 630728, Baltimore, MD 21263-0728

The Salvation Army has been at work in Japan since 1895, operating more than 80 centers there, including two hospitals and four children's homes. We have nearly 200 officers, 3,000 members and nearly 1,000 employees already at work in the country. We are a part of Japan's communities and dedicated to their recovery. 

 AnnMarie Taft is the Media and Special Events Coordinator for The Salvation Army-Buffalo Area Services


Junior League of Buffalo Show House

The Buffalo News and the Junior League of Buffalo announce that the Bayliss-Oshei Residence has been selected as the site of the 2011 Decorators’ Show House.  Located at 360 Depew Avenue in Buffalo’s Central Park community, the home sits directly across from Burke’s Green on land that was originally the Lewis J. Bennett Estate.

 Area decorators will be invited to a “Bidding Day” at the home on Friday, November 19th, where they can begin the process of submitting design proposals for rooms and spaces.  Decorators interested in participating may contact Junior League Headquarters at 884.8865.

 The Bayliss-Oshei Residence will be open for public viewing from April 30 through May 22, 2011.  Advance tickets are $15 and will be available in late November through the Junior League.  A $5 Sneak Peek of the undecorated home will take place on February 5-6, 2011. More information on Show House will made available on the League’s website at

The Bayliss-Oshei Residence will be the 16th Show House sponsored by The News and the Junior League of Buffalo.  Working collaboratively, Show Houses have yielded proceeds totaling $3,233,000.  As a result, 19 cultural and human service organizations have received significant funding for high impact programs benefiting Buffalo and Erie County.

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Darwin Martin Complex was chosen as the recipient of 2009 Show House proceeds totaling $515,000 for development of the Junior League of Buffalo/Buffalo News Learning Center.

Hunger Hunt Month

Join the Buffalo City Mission in the fight to help "Stamp Out Hunger".  The need is not hard to see—for hunger’s all around us.  So don’t just sit there - be a part of the experience.  On February 1st the Journey will begin. Every week, points and prizes will be awarded for completed tasks like watching videos, searching websites, doing puzzles, and more.

Each day you visit the site during the 28 days of February, you’ll earn valuable points you can use to win great prizes! Winners will be announced weekly. Runner-up and grand prize winners will be announced the first week of march. Also every dollar donated through “If These Shoes Could Talk" Campaign to help Stamp Out Hunger, the Patrick P. Lee Foundation will match up to 20,000!

$1.84 Million Raised by City Mission

The Buffalo City Mission announced yesterday that the goal for its annual “One Mission, One Hope” fall campaign has been exceeded. Over $1.84 Million dollars has been raised due to the generosity of the community. These critical funds will help sustain programs and services for the region’s homeless. READ MORE...

A Week With The Homeless

Ben Tagg, Director of Steps Ministries in South Buffalo joined Eric Johns of The Buffalo Dream Center on the streets of Buffalo this week, raising awareness in their fight against poverty and homelessness in Buffalo. Johns has  has made this an annual tradition for the lsst 12 years. Ben shares his experience in a special piece for THRiVE!, READ MORE...