Utica National Group Foundation Grants Helping to Feed the Hungry, Support Area Restaurants

April 23, 2020 – New Hartford, New York

Providing meals for area residents while supporting local restaurants is the focus of two grants totaling $75,400 from the Utica National Group Foundation.

The Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the Utica National Insurance Group, donated $25,000 to the Hope House in Utica to provide lunches 6 days a week for 5 weeks to the 75 guests it serves each day. Hope House contracted with several area restaurants to deliver the daily meals, and this program started on April 13th.

“Hope House serves the underprivileged in our community. If the current pandemic outbreak negatively effects the general population, imagine the impact it has on the homeless or those with mental health issues,” said John Madej, Hope House’s Executive Director. “The grant allows Hope House to buy take-out meals from local restaurants and serve them to our guests for lunch. Everyone is extremely appreciative of the restaurant food – something that most of our guests have never experienced. I know it’s bringing a smile to the faces of many in these uncertain times.”

In addition, the Utica National Group Foundation donated $50,400 to the Rescue Mission of Utica. This grant enables the non-profit to provide 180 dinners 7 nights a week for 4 weeks for their guests and clients. This program will start on April 27th.

These grants ensure those in need will be fed, the employees of these non-profits get a brief respite during the crisis, and local restaurants will be operating, keeping their employees working – each an important goal of this effort.

“These are challenging times for everyone, so playing a role in providing meals for those who need them and helping these local businesses weather this storm is essential,” said Bernard Turi, Chair of the Foundation’s Screening Committee and Utica National’s Senior Vice President General Counsel, General Auditor and Chief Risk Officer. “These non-profits work tirelessly throughout the year, so helping them to make meals available is a sincere way to say ‘thank you’ for all that they’re doing.”

About the Utica National Group Foundation

The Utica National Group Foundation was established 1987 in advance of the company’s 75th anniversary. Since then, it has provided grants totaling several million dollars to hundreds of agencies and projects making positive contributions through their programs and services. In celebration of the company’s 100th anniversary in 2014, the Foundation donated $1,000,000 to The Community Foundation of Herkimer & Oneida Counties to support such programs and services in our community and more recently, donated $1,000,000 to the MVHS towards the Downtown Utica Hospital project.