Anti-violence organizations show there’s unity in community during giveaway event on Genesee Street

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BUFFALO N.Y. (WIVB) — Several anti-violence groups in Buffalo are teaming up with some of the area’s biggest businesses to give back and prove there’s strength in unity.

Back to Basics Ministries, which is the parent organization for the Buffalo Peacemakers, Stop the Violence Coalition and SNUG anti-gun advocacy group, hosted a food, clothing and backpack giveaway for families and residents living in and around Buffalo’s Bailey Green neighborhood.

“This is unity in the community. A lot of people think that we don’t work together, no we do,” said Pastor James Giles, who’s the president of Back to Basics Ministries.

“Everybody is not bad, we’re here to show people that there is good still in this community,” said Robyn Worthy, who’s a member of Buffalo Peacemakers.

Some of Western New York’s largest businesses also helped with Friday’s event.

The Buffalo Bills donated more than 200 fleece jackets and Wegmans gave away groceries. Representatives from National Grid were also on-site to advise residents on its low-income programs and initiatives.

“Not only are we just tied to providing an electrical service, but also finding out what the communities need that we serve and it’s reaching out beyond just making sure the lights are on,” National Grid Regional Director Ken Kujawa said.

Organizers say their overall goal is to bring hope to a community dealing with poverty, crime and neglect.

“These type of acts, these types of events are a way of us healing the community but first of all we want them to come together,” Pastor Giles said. “It’s the notion of community seeing groups and partnerships and corporations working with community based organizations coming together and that is significant because there’s so much division in Buffalo, at times.”

Sarah Minkewicz is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.

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