One hundred percent of the contributions donated to the Buffalo Survivors Fund established by Tops and the National Compassion Fund will go directly to those affected by the deadly mass shooting at a Tops store in Buffalo, N.Y.
Following a racially motivated mass shooting at the Tops Markets store on Jefferson Avenue in Buffalo, N.Y., that left 10 people dead and three wounded, Tops has teamed with the nonprofit National Compassion Fund (NCF) to establish the Buffalo 5/14 Survivors Fund, which will provide direct financial assistance to the survivors of those killed and people directly affected by the tragedy. Tops has contributed $500,000 to get the fund started.
“What happened was ruthless and heartbreaking,” said Tops President John Persons. “Those that lost their lives will forever be in our hearts and will never be forgotten. Tops is committed to supporting those families affected and to help the community grieve and heal from this tragic event. We have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support, and we thank everyone for their incredible kindness.”
One hundred percent of the contributions donated to the Buffalo Survivors Fund will go directly to families of those killed as well as the wounded and those who were present in the store and experienced psychological trauma. Tops said that it hoped to partner with many local and business leaders on raising funds for the initiative.
Qualifying charitable donations to the fund are tax-deductible. Those who wish to make an online contribution can visit Fundraiser by National Compassion Fund: Buffalo Survivors Fund on gofundme.com, or if they wish to write a check or send funds via electronic transfer, they can visit Buffalo 5/14 Survivors Fund - National Compassion Fund.
Tops is also forming a local steering committee, made up of community and business leaders, to establish the eligibility and distribution policies for the fund, which will be managed and operated by the NCF. Additional details will be provided in the next few weeks.
“Our hearts go out to the entire Buffalo community,” said Jeffrey Dion, executive director of the Alexandria, Va.-based NCF, a subsidiary of the National Center for Victims of Crime. “We are honored to join forces with Tops Friendly Markets, the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo, and VictimsFirst to increase charitable giving and help meet the overwhelming needs of the survivors of this atrocity. We stand in solidarity with all those impacted by gun violence.”
Together with philanthropic partners, the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo has created a second fund, the Buffalo Together Community Response Fund, to provide important resources for both immediate community needs and long-term recovery.
Williamsville, N.Y.-based Tops Markets LLC operates 150 supermarkets, including five franchise stores, and employs more than 14,000 associates in New York, northern Pennsylvania and western Vermont. The banner’s parent company, Northeast Grocery Inc., is No. 44 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.