BlueCross BlueShield Blue Fund Contributes $1M to WNY COVID-19 Community Response Fund
Most Recent $900,000 Investment Announced Today
Fund Addresses Growing, Critical Community Needs
Buffalo, N.Y. — To address the growing needs in our community as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York’s Blue Fund today announced a corporate donation of $900,000 in additional funding to the WNY COVID-19 Community Response Fund, bringing the Blue Fund’s total investment to $1 million.
As a founding corporate funder of the WNY COVID-19 Community Response Fund, BlueCross BlueShield’s initial $100,000 contribution helped launched the fund in March 2020— in collaboration with other philanthropic organizations—to address the most immediate community needs. Now, as the crisis continues to unfold, the region’s leading health plan is pivoting its traditional 2020 Blue Fund grant cycle to support recovery and rebuilding efforts in Buffalo-Niagara through an additional $900,000 donation to the WNY COVID-19 Community Response Fund.
“BlueCross BlueShield has a longstanding legacy of giving back to the communities we serve, and we are proud to support efforts that can effectively address the evolving needs of Western New York families, individuals and organizations during this difficult time,” said David W. Anderson, President and CEO, BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York. “Together we will rebuild our community and come back stronger than ever.”
The giving is coordinated by the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo, the Health Foundation for Western & Central New York, The John R. Oishei Foundation, and the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County.
To date, the funds supported initiatives that address social determinants of health, and other challenges raised by COVID-19 in the areas of food security, housing, health care, childcare, mental health, transportation, and other emergency services. Going forward, the effort is evolving into a “Build Back Better” initiative to support developing strategies focused on recovery efforts through collaborative systems work.
“The sudden arrival of the COVID-19 crisis necessitated an immediate response to meet the significant need in the community with everyone working together on solutions. We are grateful that BlueCross BlueShield has continued to generously contribute more resources in this collaborative effort that has already granted out $6.6 million to support more than 156 organizations in Western New York working on the frontlines at this time of great need,” said Clotilde Perez-Bode Dedecker, President/CEO of Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo.
Over the past several weeks, BlueCross BlueShield has also delivered thousands of meals and healthy snacks to dedicated individuals who are on the frontlines serving our community during the COVID 19 pandemic. The health plan also continues to cover all costs associated with their fully insured membership’s testing, treatment and care for COVID-19. Visit www.bcbswny.com/coronavirus for more information on BlueCross BlueShield’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
About BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York
BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York is a division of HealthNow New York Inc., an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Since 1936, BlueCross BlueShield has helped millions of people lead healthier lives. BlueCross BlueShield offers a full range of insured, self-insured, and government programs and services covering businesses, families, and individuals, as well as dental and vision plans and stop-loss coverage. As a community-based, not-for-profit health plan, BlueCross BlueShield contributes significantly to organizations that strengthen and enrich the health of our community.
About Blue Fund
Blue Fund, funded solely by BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York, awards major grants in Western New York, totaling approximately $1 million to $3 million annually, to organizations and initiatives that have a positive impact on key health areas and will demonstrate enhanced measurable outcomes for community health metrics. These include behavioral health, cardiovascular health, health-care workforce development and healthy children. Blue Fund complements BlueCross BlueShield's current corporate giving program of partnerships and sponsorships which saw community investments of more than $3 million in Western New York in 2018.
About the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo
Celebrating its centennial year in 2019, the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo was established in 1919 to enhance and encourage long-term philanthropy in the Western New York community. A 501 (c)(3) organization, the Community Foundation’s mission is: Connecting people, ideas and resources to improve lives in Western New York. For 100 years the Community Foundation has made the most of the generosity of individuals, families, foundations and organizations who entrust charitable assets to the Community Foundation’s care. Learn more at www.cfgb.org.