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Wilson Foundation donates $4.2 million to Kaleida adult day services, senior care

The Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation on Friday announced a $4.2 million donation to Kaleida Health to support an endowment for adult day services and senior home care.

For many years, Ralph Wilson Jr. provided annual funding to help defray the cost of attendance and transportation to the adult day service program. Wilson, who died in March 2014 at age 95, also provided funding for activities and capital purchases.

Kaleida Health operates two adult day service centers, in Amherst and North Tonawanda. Both will be named the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Adult Day Services. The donation will also assist Kaleida Health’s home care program, the Visiting Nursing Association.

“Ralph cared deeply about the importance of what Kaleida Health means to the Western New York region and was particularly passionate about ensuring a place for seniors and adults in need of health and nutritional services,” said Mary Wilson, widow of the late Buffalo Bills owner and a foundation trustee, in a statement. “We hope that today’s donation will be an important piece in continuing to provide that level of care.”

She was joined at the announcement by Mary Owen, Wilson’s niece and also a trustee, and Gerard Mazurkiewicz, a veteran Kaleida Health volunteer and new member of the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation board.

“This endowment continues Mr. Wilson’s giving legacy to Kaleida Health and will tangibly impact thousands of lives in the years ahead. We are so thankful for the support,” Jody Lomeo, president and CEO of Kaleida Health, said in a statement.

Judy Baumgartner, president of the VNA of Western New York, said the gift will allow many people who need assistance to safely remain in their homes. The VNA is a subsidiary of Kaleida Health.

The donation is a continuation of previous support. The foundation in 2010 gave Kaleida Health $1 million – $200,000 a year over five years – for the adult day care programs.

email: citydesk@buffnews.com