Catholic Charities Appeal reaches $9.5 million, 86 percent of this year’s goal

$281,235 has come from Chautauqua County

BUFFALO — Catholic Charities of Buffalo officials this week reported a recent surge in donations has helped the 2018 Appeal reach $9.5 million in cash and pledges, representing 86 percent of this year’s goal. This updated total includes an influx of more than $600,000 since April 30 when the Appeal was at $8.9 million. With fewer than seven weeks remaining, the 94th annual Appeal remains $1.5 million short of its $11 million goal.

According to officials, in Chautauqua County, three of the 12 parishes and one campus ministry so far have exceeded their 2018 Appeal goals, which is the amount they raised in 2017. Those are St. James Church, Jamestown; St. Mary of Lourdes Church, Bemus Point; Christ Our Hope Church, Clymer; and State University of New York at Fredonia Campus Ministry. The Chautauqua County parishes are currently at $281,235 and they raised nearly $340,000 last year.

Sister Mary McCarrick, OSF, diocesan director of Catholic Charities, said the uptick in donations is an indication its many supporters recognize the valuable work the organization does to help those in need throughout Western New York.

“We are encouraged by the progress we have made over the past two weeks and by the fact donors are not taking out their frustrations or anger with the Diocese of Buffalo on those who rely on Catholic Charities for support,” said Sister Mary. “We continue to hold out hope our prayers will be answered and our efforts will be rewarded as we strive to make this year’s goal before our June 30 deadline. We also continue to urge anyone who hasn’t yet taken the opportunity to give this year to do so as soon as possible.”

Sister Mary also thanked the Western New York media for its continued support. “We have benefited greatly from a recent spate of articles, interviews and editorials helping to raise awareness for the Appeal, demonstrating how the funds raised are used to benefit those in need, and the potential impact if this year’s goal isn’t met,” Sister Mary explained.

Funds raised during the Appeal will help support the 70 programs and services provided by Catholic Charities at 61 sites throughout Western New York, along with a number of ministries that are part of the Bishop’s Fund for the Faith.

Catholic Charities has been helping individuals and families in need throughout the eight counties of the diocese since 1923. The organization impacted the lives of more than 152,000 individuals — Catholic and non-Catholics alike — over the past year alone.

The theme of this year’s Appeal, which began in January, is “Love your Neighbor” and the patron saint is St. Clare of Assisi.

Catholic Charities is the most comprehensive human service provider in the region, serving people of all ages, races, faiths and walks of life. It has helped individuals and families in need since its founding in 1923. That need is varied and widespread – from emergency assistance to mental health counseling and treatment, and from specialized services for older adults to help with job training and education.

Catholic Charities empowers children, families and seniors to achieve meaningful, healthy and productive lives. In all situations, Catholic Charities delivers support to meet immediate needs, and then assesses clients for other needs to ensure long-term success.

To donate to the 2018 Appeal or for more information, go to or contact Catholic Charities at (716) 218-1400. You can also join us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.