Katie’s Paid Paid Vacation


Back in 2017, CCNY started an initiative called Paid Paid Vacation (PPV) to help foster company wellness. Every quarter, full-time staff here are entered into a draw for a chance to win $300 to be used towards something fun (not bills!) during a two-day vacation.  Those days are in addition to their usual paid time off. Our Coordinator of Clinical Program Development, Katie Miller, was our Q2 winner! In fact, it was her second time winning since PPV was first launched.

Here’s how she spent her recent mini-break:

” After a very long winter and a lot of big changes in 2019 already for the Miller-Mauro clan, the Paid Paid vacation was just what we needed! We trekked right over the border to Great Wolf Lodge and spent a of couple days swimming a lot, eating a lot, and catching up with each other. The timing was perfect!”

Indoor water slide.

Click to learn more about our unlimited vacation policy and last quarter’s PPV winner.

Vendor Agency Spotlight: The Arc Erie County


This month, we chatted with Mary Marranca-Hood (Associate Director of Community Support Services) and Laneesha Eve (Mental Health Community Program Manager) of the Arc Erie County to learn more about their work in the community and role in the Erie County Wraparound Vendor Network.  Founded in May 1954, they have grown to a staff of nearly one thousand employees.

“We serve the intellectually disabled population from birth to death and the Mental Health population 7-21, along with those who are medically fragile, intellectually disabled, and serious emotionally disturbed in Foster Care.  We have been part of the Erie County Children’s System of Care and the Vendor Network since 2004 when the network was developed.  Wraparound is a service designed to ‘wrap around the entire family’ building on a family strength-based model to reduce stress, focus on strengths, and rebuild the family to keep them together.

The rewards of being in the Network are to serve families and build relationships across the county.  Some challenges are the many changes and staying abreast of funding streams and the redesign of services.  The Arc is unique in its role as we have a reputation and an array of services to serve both the intellectually disabled and the mental health population.  Our area of expertise, focuses on medical, and physical challenges along with an array of services ranging from Respite to Supported Employment opportunities.”

Thanks to Mary and Lanesha for their thoughtful responses and to the Arc for being a part of our network!

David’s Paid Paid Vacation


Back in 2017, CCNY launched an initiative called Paid Paid Vacation to help foster company wellness. Every quarter, full-time staff here are entered into a draw for a chance to win $300 to be used towards something fun (not bills!) during a two-day vacation.  Those days are in addition to their usual paid time off. Our Director of Evaluation and Analytics, David Monroe, was blessed with the luck of the Irish during Q1 of 2019. Here’s what he had to say about his recent jig jaunt:

“When I won, I already had plans to take my girlfriend to Toronto to walk around, see the fish at the aquarium, and eat amazing food.  Since I’m the Director of Evaluation and Analytics, I’d be remiss if I didn’t share the data from this amazing trip:

  • Miles walked – 13.06
  • Fish seen – Over 20,000
  • Sting Rays touched – 1
  • People newly engaged  – 2
One fish, two fish, green fish, blue fish.

Yup, I popped the question, and Stefanie Westman said yes!

I was hoping to surprise her by making it about a getaway and having my name drawn for the Paid Paid Vacation was the perfect cover story.  We danced on the 18th floor balcony, walked the city, ate amazing food, and were just happy all weekend. By the way, if you get to Toronto, go to the Senator. They had asked about why we were in Toronto, and when they found out about our engagement, staff came out to congratulate us, and they gave us a big cookie for the walk to the Ripley’s Aquarium.  It felt like something that would happen in Buffalo.

Purveyors of fine wines and high spirits.

I’m so happy CCNY gave me the time and some funds to make this moment so special.”

Congratulations to David and Stefanie!

Sharing The Love

Jessica and her fiancé, Matt, at Key Bank Center.

Most people might not think of snow and ice as being conducive to the Valentine’s spirit but here in Buffalo, we take it all in stride. Our evaluator, Jessica Tufte, won a pair of Sabres tickets gifted to us by our neighbors and local printer, S&B Marketing. Here’s what she had to say about last week’s game:

It was a really exciting game that the Sabres sadly lost in overtime 5-6. We were both particularly excited to get to see them play the Carolina Hurricanes since [North] Carolina was our home-away-from-home for the last few years, and we were able to see our very own Sabres play them down there a couple of years ago! Thanks again!

To learn more about CCNY’s approach to employee wellness, check out our articles about implementing Paid Paid Vacations and Unlimited PTO.

Registration For 2019 Erie County Community Health Assessment Focus Group Now Open


Catholic Health and Kaleida Health are hosting community stakeholder focus groups as part of the 2019 Erie County Community Health Assessment and want you to join! Your knowledge of the community is needed to help make Erie County a better, healthier place.

Local health departments and health systems are charged with conducting Community Health Assessments to identify key health issues. A community health assessment gives organizations comprehensive information about the community’s current health status, needs, and issues.

As part of this process, Catholic Health and Kaleida Health conduct stakeholder focus groups to seek input from community-based organizations.  Your participation in this process is extremely important as it is part of a county-wide effort to gather information that can help with developing a three-year community health improvement plan by justifying how and where resources should be allocated to best meet community needs.

There is a 12-seat limit and they’re sure to be snatched up quickly, so register today!   If you are unable to attend, please consider sending a representative on behalf of your organization.

Refreshments will be provided.

RSVP with password: FOCUSGRP2019.

Wednesday, March 13th 2019 from 3:30 PM – 5:30 PM

Trinity Center
Mission Room
371 Delaware Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14202

For questions, please contact Clement Nsiah at

Complete Non-Profit Survey For Chance To Win $50!


The Western New York Nonprofit Support Group needs your help! This new working group, comprised of five foundations and two independent consultants, is working to help non-profits in Western New York and Monroe County come together to collaborate, learn, and innovate to strengthen their ability to deliver on their missions. They have partnered with the Center for Governmental Research (CGR) to learn about the capacity building needs and resources in our communities. Capacity building in this case refers to support and technical assistance to help non-profits increase specific capacities to deliver stronger programs, take risks, build connections, and innovate.

Your voice in this study is really important.  Survey responses will be used to inform the group about what organizations like yours want, need, and already have access to in regards to capacity building resources and services, so as to build on existing efforts and fill gaps not currently being addressed to help you and your organizations better achieve your missions. Your feedback will inform the kinds of services and initiatives that might be supported in the future.

This survey is entirely voluntary and neither your name nor the name of your organization will be tied to survey results. The survey should take about 20 minutes to complete. Once you’ve completed the survey, you can enter to win a drawing for one of four $50 VISA gift cards.  The survey will close on February 7th 2019.

If you have any questions about the survey, please email

Honoring MLK’s Legacy: Lessons In Better Serving The Equality Movement


Martin_Luther_King_press_conference_01269u_editOne of the best ways to celebrate MLK Day is to hear how he viewed the world and wanted to be remembered. We can do this by listening to his speech “The Drum Major Instinct”. It may be his best speech in his history of amazing American speeches.

He describes the Drum Major Instinct as both a useful and destructive instinct in all of us.

“Yes, don’t give up this instinct. It’s a good instinct if you use it right. (Yes) It’s a good instinct if you don’t distort it and pervert it. Don’t give it up. Keep feeling the need for being important. Keep feeling the need for being first. But I want you to be first in love. (Amen) I want you to be first in moral excellence. I want you to be first in generosity. That is what I want you to do.”

He talks about how the ego, the destructive version of this instinct, is the reason why race problems exist:

“Do you know that a lot of the race problem grows out of the drum-major instinct? A need that some people have to feel superior. A need that some people have to feel that they are first and to feel that their white skin ordained them to be first.”

And ironically, two months before his assassination, he talks about how he wants to be remembered:

I’d like somebody to mention that day that Martin Luther King, Jr., tried to give his life serving others. (Yes)

I’d like for somebody to say that day that Martin Luther King, Jr., tried to love somebody.

I want you to say that day that I tried to be right on the war question. (Amen)

I want you to be able to say that day that I did try to feed the hungry. (Yes)

And I want you to be able to say that day that I did try in my life to clothe those who were naked. (Yes)

I want you to say on that day that I did try in my life to visit those who were in prison. (Lord)

I want you to say that I tried to love and serve humanity. (Yes)

It’s a good day to take the time and listen to or read the entire speech here.

The Play Everywhere Challenge is Back!


Do you have a great idea for how to turn everyday places such as a grocery store, a waiting room, or a sidewalk into a unique play space that makes kids say “I want to play there!”? Well, KaBOOM! wants to hear it!

They’re calling for ideas to get kids playing in unexpected, everyday places.

The Play Everywhere Challenge is back for its second year and is supported by the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation. Play Everywhere is a community-driven design competition to develop new ideas for bringing the play to everyday spaces, making play easy and available for kids and families. Based on submissions, they will select grantees from across Southeast Michigan and Western New York to receive a combined total of $1,000,000 in grant funds.

The Idea Form application just went live this week, so start submitting your amazing ideas at If you submit by their Early Bird deadline, February 15th, you can receive additional support and feedback from KaBOOM! in developing your Play Everywhere concept. To learn more, visit

Please direct any questions to Vita at or (202) 464-6080.

NY Funders Alliance Working Group Seeks Program Director


The Western New York Non-Profit Support Group is looking to hire a new Program Director who will manage the day-to-day operations of the group itself and will be responsible for designing and directing strategy in collaboration with the group’s members.

Image result for ny funders alliance

The working group includes representatives from the following organizations:

  • The Health Foundation for Western and Central New York
  • The John R. Oishei Foundation
  • The Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Foundation
  • The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation
  • The Western New York Foundation

Full job description:

To apply for this position, please submit a cover letter and résumé to Sandra Moore at The deadline for applications is 12 PM on February 27, 2019.

BlueCross BlueShield WNY Grant Opportunity


BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York (BCBSWNY) recently launched a new grant program whose purpose is to meaningfully invest in community health and sustainability.  Blue Fund will focus on six key health areas: behavioral health, cardiovascular health, diabetes, healthcare workforce development, pediatric health, and the opioid epidemic.  This funding opportunity is open to evidence-based health programs of non-profit, educational, and government entities in the WNY region.

Image Source: Buffalo Scoop.

To be a competitive and effective grantee, your organization must have the capacity to track performance and report measurable outcomes.  After all, gathering data is only half the job.  CCNY can help you develop actionable analytics and reports to not only ensure your program stays on track but also demonstrate its value to potential and current funders.

Blue Fund’s deadline is fast approaching (February 4th 2019 at 4:00 PM), so if you’d like to start a conversation about our Evaluation and Reporting services, e-mail us today at: or call (716) 855-0007.