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Posted on: May 12, 2022

Mayor Brown Announces 2022 ‘Love Your Block’ Initiative

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Buffalo, NY – Mayor Byron W. Brown today invited City residents or eligible City resident-led groups to apply for a block beautification project. Now in its fourth year, the ‘Love Your Block’ program awards grants up to $1,500 to community groups, block clubs, and small, locally-owned businesses for projects that will transform or beautify a public space. The submission deadline is Wednesday, June 1, 2022.

“As we continue to build a diverse, equitable and inclusive Buffalo without Boundaries, I continue to support programs that leverage community engagement and volunteerism to further improve and beautify our neighborhoods,” Mayor Brown said. “This successful program provides a great opportunity for our residents to make a hands-on difference in their communities and I encourage groups and small businesses to apply. I want to thank the Division of Citizen Services for spearheading a program driven by grassroots, community-led, effort to further clean, green, and beautify Buffalo neighborhoods.”

Applicants residing in the Broadway-Fillmore, Kensington-Bailey, Masten Park, Riverside, Lower West Side and Upper West Side neighborhoods, although applicants from all neighborhoods in the City of Buffalo are encouraged to apply. Block clubs and community-based organizations outside of these seven neighborhoods are eligible to apply, however preference will be given to projects in the neighborhoods mentioned above.

Love Your Block began in 2018, after Buffalo was awarded a grant by Cities of Service, a national nonprofit whose mission includes connecting residents and mayors to improve neighborhoods. The City of Buffalo identified Love Your Block as a priority program within the Division of Citizen Services and has secured additional funding from Cities RISE to sustain the program.

Director Mestre, says “The Division of Citizen Service’s Love Your Block initiative, invites eligible Buffalo resident-led groups to apply for a block beautification project. Love Your Block provides a unique opportunity for resident-led groups to transform and beautify their neighborhood while leveraging City services. Resident- led groups (grantees) receive a grant to transform their neighborhood.”

In addition to funding, grantees have the potential to receive support from City services. The Love Your Block program utilizes our AmeriCorps VISTA members who help facilitate and assist with the work of empowering volunteer-led neighborhood revitalization projects and much more.

Love Your Block has funded a total of 60 projects across 22 neighborhoods through its previous grant cycles. Proposed projects must fall in one of the four categories:

Vacant Lot Activation:

Community Garden/greenhouse, playground, public art installation, and recreational space

Community Space Revitalization:

Repairs or modifications to community facilities (schools, community centers, park shelters, senior centers, etc.), graffiti removal and/or replacement of graffiti with a mural, planting trees and/or landscaping community facilities

Accessibility Improvements:

Implementing creative lighting, replacing broken or worn out litter bins, creating/managing a “tool library” where neighborhood groups can borrow & return tools for cleanup projects

Streetscape Improvements:

Community volunteer-led beautification on the business strips in the five identified target areas. This includes landscaping, art installments, pedestrian spaces, lighting improvements, and public safety

For more information, visit www.buffalony.gov or loveyourblock@buffalony.gov

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