The Commercial Record file photo

M&T Bank’s charitable foundation has now distributed 80 percent of the bank’s $25 million Amplify Fund to 173 nonprofits in its New England markets, most of them in Connecticut.

First announced in May 2022, the fund is aimed at supporting low- and moderate-income individuals and families, minority and underrepresented populations in the communities People’s United Bank served. M&T completed its acquisition of Bridgeport-based People’s United in April 2022.

The second round of funding – the most recent – amounted to $8.2 million and was distributed to 68 nonprofits that serve and provide access to affordable housing, childcare, healthcare, and job training, among others.

The recent giving focused on funding nonprofits for up to three years, working to advance equity in four key areas of focus:

  • Family stability: affordable housing, food security and access to quality and affordable childcare;
  • Income and wealth equity: employment, small business, homeownership and financial empowerment;
  • Workforce development: education and training, upskilling and career pathways in high-growth sectors;
  • Health equity: access to quality and affordable healthcare, with priority given to youth mental health, and women and infant health.

The first round of donations to 105 nonprofit totaled $11.8 million, supporting equity and environmental initiatives, mission-driven and capacity-building work, community and tenant organizing and financial empowerment and education for individuals and small businesses.

“At M&T, addressing the institutionalized and systemic issues preventing disadvantaged communities from accessing opportunities and achieving long-term success is key to our mission as a community-focused bank,” Dominique Goss, executive director of the M&T Charitable Foundation, said in a statement. “We are proud to provide the Amplify Fund as a difference-making resource in the communities we serve and look forward to continuing our work to increase racial and economic equity throughout our footprint.”

Family Centers, Inc., a Greenwich, Connecticut-based nonprofit offering health, education, and human service programs, was one of the beneficiaries.

“We are grateful for this grant through the M&T Charitable Foundation, as it allows us to address an immediate need facing so many children and families in Stamford,” Leslie Sexer, chief program officer for Family Centers, said in a statement provided by M&T. “Through our collaboration with the Stamford Youth Mental Health Alliance (YMHA), our Screening Stamford’s Youth initiative will allow us to identify mental health issues and intervene before they reach a crisis point. Leveraging Family Centers’ holistic network of health, education, and human service programs – along with the relationships of our community partners – we will also connect families with the services they need to thrive.”