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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

>Thompson continues tour in Northwest Center

State Sen.-elect Antoine M. Thompson will make another stop on his listening tour from 7 to 8 p.m. today in the Northwest Community Center, 155 Lawn Ave.

For more information, call 851-5145.

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>Tops Markets to present $112,000 to food banks

Tops Markets will present a total of $112,000 to food banks in areas where the company operates through its annual Hope for the Holidays program, thanks to the generosity of customers who used tear-off coupons to make donations at the cash registers, it was announced Tuesday.

More than half the total -- $63,357 -- will go to the Food Bank of Western New York, reflecting donations made locally.

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>Literacy project tops list of grant recipients

The Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo recently awarded nearly a half-million dollars in grants -- the largest amount given away at one time in the foundation's history.

The biggest award, $200,000, went to a collaborative effort know as Buffalo Reads, which has as its goal a literacy rate of 100 percent in Buffalo.

"Literacy is probably the single most critical factor in helping the economically disadvantaged reach self-sufficiency, and raising these levels in the city is one of the foundation's most critical goals," said Gail Johnstone, president and chief executive officer of the foundation.

In total, the foundation gave out $490,981 to 14 health and human services programs in Erie and Niagara counties, as part of its second grantmaking "cycle" of 2006.

Other recipients included:

* The Family Justice Center of Erie County -- $56,000 for a forensic medical documentation program for individuals and families affected by domestic abuse and violence.

* Jericho Road Ministries -- $47,000 for a mentoring program for refugee women in medical crisis.

* People United for Sustainable Housing (PUSH) -- $25,000 to help increase home ownership on the West Side.

* AIDS Family Services -- $15,000 for a nutrition program for persons living with HIV or AIDS.

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