Buffalo celebrates 'day of hope and healing' in wake of Jefferson Tops attack

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Hundreds gather for a day of 'Hope and Healing' in Buffalo, N.Y. Saturday, July 30, 2022 Photo credit WBEN Photo

Buffalo, N.Y. (WBEN) - In sharp contrast to the grief and mourning that filled crowds gathered in the shadows of the Jefferson Avenue Tops in Buffalo following the May 14 racist attack that claimed ten lives, it was hope and celebration on display at the Stanley Makowski Early Childhood School Saturday afternoon.

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Hundreds gathered outside the school for a formal ceremony featuring community leaders, including Governor Kathy Hochul, and a school backpack and food giveaway was held to offer continued support to the community.

Residents in the community were reminded applications are now open for comprehensive programs supporting residents of East Buffalo as part of the state's $50 million target investment program. Applications become available Monday for the second round of the $4 million East Side Commercial Districts Program, which is creating an expanded building renovation program in four investment areas—Jefferson Avenue Commercial District, MLK Park Business District, Broadway Fillmore, and Kensington Bailey—to improve the business climate, combat commercial vacancies, and contribute to the corridors' overall revitalization.

Additionally, applications for the $20 million Buffalo East Homeowner Assistance Fund, $10 million Buffalo East Home Improvement Program, and $4.5 million East Buffalo Down Payment Assistance Plus Program will open on Tuesday, August 9. Starting Wednesday, August 3, residents can call 211 to learn about our housing programs and small business grants and how to apply.

"We are stronger together," exclaimed Hochul during formal remarks at the event. "That's why I love Buffalo, N.Y."