Jamestown Board of Public Utilities (BPU) employees and major donors met Wednesday to celebrate a new record amount raised by the community during the 2015 BPU “Cents for St. Susan’s” campaign. The BPU fund drive result this year totals $17,410 to benefit St. Susan Center, surpassing the 2014 record total of $17,260.
The soup kitchen is located at 31 Water Street in the Gateway Center Building. The amount of money contributed in 2015 brings the cumulative amount raised, in fifteen years of BPU campaigns, to $160,118.55.
Personnel representing major campaign sponsors were on hand for the announcement, including KeyBank at the $2,000 level and DFT Communications at the $1,000 level; Alfie’s Restaurant, Asplundh, Burgett & Robbins Attorneys, Century 21/Turner Brokers, Falconer Printing and Design, Inc., FreedMaxick Accountants, The Legend Group with Lou Deppas, National Fuel, Slone-Melhuish Insurance, TJ’s Plumbing & Heating, Valu Hearing Services, Weinberg Financial Group and Wright, Wright & Hampton Attorneys, all at the $500 level. Boyle Motor Sales contributed as a one-newsletter sponsor. The Jamestown Post-Journal and the Media One Stations provided generous media coverage. Farm Fresh Foods, KeyBank and BPU employee volunteers also provided hot dog sales for the drive.
BPU General Manager David Leathers expressed appreciation to the major sponsors and to all those in the community who contributed to the success of the campaign. “We never set a goal for this effort, hoping that the community may come forth in the best way possible in any given economic year,” said Leathers. “We now have reached more than $17,000 in two consecutive years and are very grateful for everyone’s assistance. The canisters themselves brought in nearly $2,500.”
BPU Communications Coordinator Becky Robbins, who operates the drive, was very pleased. “We had enormous help from major sponsors again this year as well as from the many local residents who contributed through the mail, added gifts to BPU bill payments, dropped coins in canisters around the community and even brought in hundreds of redeemable cans and bottles,” noted Robbins. “The BPU and our sponsors are happy to help St. Susan Center feed the increased numbers of soup kitchen visitors again this year.”
“St. Susan Executive Director Jeffrey Smith added, “ The Cents for St Susan Campaign is a blessing for the center. I want to thank all the major contributors to this event who have been supportive the center for many years now. But I also want to thank every else who dropped a coin or bill in the canisters around town. All of the donations, large or small help us in the fight against hunger in our community.
“I need to recongnize all the folks at the BPU for their commitment to this campaign. Please accept my heartfelt thanks for your tremendous support of our mission,” states Smith. This year St. Susan Center reached a milestone, serving its 2-millionth meal. It took almost 22 years to reach one million meals but less than 10 to reach the second million meals, which reflects the growing need in our community.
The BPU has organized fifteen annual “Cents for St. Susan’s” campaigns which have take place from late-April to mid-July