by Kaitlin Jackson
Catholic Charities officials announced today that the 2019 Appeal in support of Catholic Charities and the Fund for the Faith achieved a total of $9,308,843 in cash and pledges, representing 85% of its $11 million goal.
Catholic Charities President and Chief Executive Officer Dennis C. Walczyk thanked donors for their support.
“We are so grateful to the thousands of parishioners, corporations and members of the Western New York community who stepped up to give this year, even as the Appeal faced many challenges,” said Walczyk. “I also want to express my deep appreciation to every one of our volunteers, who were led with passion and dedication by our Appeal leadership team, for their herculean efforts and perseverance throughout this Appeal.”
John and Ruthanne Daly served as chairs of the 2019 Appeal.
“Thank you to all who took the time to express their concern for our neighbors in need through a contribution to the Appeal,” said John Daly. “Donors gave once, twice, perhaps even three times, because they understand that families are still in need of emergency assistance, children still need counseling and young adults still need workforce and education services to help them break the cycle of poverty.”
As a result of proactive efforts to increase efficiencies at Catholic Charities and because of the new donor designation options, the impact on Catholic Charities’ services will be minimized, Walczyk said.
“Going into this Appeal year, Bishop Richard Malone supported providing choices for donors, and we determined and acted on ways we could hold down non-direct service costs across our organization, such as not filling vacant support positions, consolidating services and selling underutilized properties,” Walczyk said. “These efforts mean that for this year our services will remain stable. Next year, we will redouble our efforts and hope that those who decided not to give this year will reconsider in 2020.”
The annual Appeal helps fund 70 programs and services administered by Catholic Charities across 61 sites in the eight counties of Western New York, along with a number of programs and ministries that benefit parishes and the faithful through the Fund for the Faith.
Father Peter Karalus, Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia for the Diocese of Buffalo, said, “We are grateful to the generous donors who supported the Appeal this year; they have affirmed the Fund for the Faith’s significant ministries which keep our parishes strong. Still, the results of the Appeal have impacted the support for such ministries as youth, infant and new mother care, those who are deaf, hospital chaplains, campus ministry, Catholic schools, and many others. The diocese is taking serious steps to adjust accordingly.”
The Appeal goal has remained unchanged for the last four years. In 2018, the goal was met with a total of $11,007,719.
The Appeal 2019 volunteer leadership team also included Vice Chairs Jon and Heather Williams, Corporate Chair Lisa Wardynski and Parish Chair Rick Cronin.
The theme of the 2019 Appeal was “Help Your Neighbor Find Hope” and the patron saint was Saint Faustina.
Donors can give to support the work of Catholic Charities and the Fund for the Faith by going to ccwny.org/donation or by calling 716-218-1400.