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Livingston County CARES Re-Focusing For The Future

Septemer 20, 2023

Mission Statement

Livingston County Cares is a non-profit, humanitarian organization dedicated to assisting communities and individuals locally, regionally, nationwide, and globally in humanitarian projects, particularly focusing on disaster relief and recovery efforts. Livingston County CARES provides a central repository for resources and information for individuals and organizations wishing to contribute to disaster relief efforts.

History and Services

Livingston County CARES was founded in 2005 as a campus and community response to help in the relief and recovery efforts from Hurricane Katrina on the Gulf Coast. Community organizations, including the Livingston County Board of Supervisors, the Livingston County Chamber of Commerce, the Village and Town of Geneseo, the Geneseo Central School District, the Livingston County Coalition of Churches, and SUNY Geneseo campus organizations and groups, joined together to create a collaborative organization to lend assistance. We began with the help of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, by forming a partnership along with mutual county resolutions, between Livingston County New York and Harrison County Mississippi. The initial ten-year agreement to raise funds and send volunteers to Biloxi and Gulfport Mississippi began with a service trip in January 2006 and continued through May 2019. During those 13 years a total of 40 service trips were conducted, involving 754 students, 108 faculty/staff/alumni, and 111 community volunteers who helped over 100 low-income families rebuild and restore their homes.

In 2012, Hurricane Superstorm Sandy devastated New York City, Long Island, and New Jersey. Livingston County Cares responded by collecting and donating recovery funds and sending 138 volunteers on 17 service trips to help in the recovery efforts from January 2013 through January 2020. Major hurricanes and other natural disasters continued to occur each year and Livingston County Cares responded with donations and multiple volunteer service trips to Florida, Louisiana, Texas, and Puerto Rico.

Livingston County Cares has also sponsored 11 annual service trips with 146 volunteers helping families and children with terminal cancer at the Make A Wish Foundation Give Kids the World facilities in Kissimmee, Florida.

In addition to conducting 94 service trips and donating funds to the recovery efforts, Livingston County Cares has collected and donated monies for relief and recovery from earthquakes in Haiti and Italy, for recovery from a tsunami in Japan and a typhoon in the Philippines, for tornado recovery in Kentucky, for building a school in Ghana, for projects in Haiti to provide medical supplies and water purification kits in a cholera epidemic, and for rebuilding efforts after Hurricane Nicole in the Bahamas.

Most recently in 2022-2023, Livingston County Cares collected and donated monies for recovery efforts from Hurricane Ian in the Ft. Myers area of Florida, for feeding refugees from the Ukraine War, for earthquake relief efforts in Turkey and Syria, and for relief efforts from the August fires in Maui.

Locally, Livingston County Cares served temporarily as the non-profit parent organization for the Geneseo/Groveland Emergency Food Pantry, served as the host agency for the Home Away From Home Respite Program (currently hosting the fund for donations and supplies for the program), serves as the non-profit agency for donations and supplies for the Enlace building schools project in Nicaragua, holds funds for the SUNY Geneseo Food Security Advocates, serves as the treasury for the Community Resource Network funds, and manages the Father Gordinier Fund for community service awards.

During the pandemic in April and May of 2020, Livingston County Cares collected donations for the Frontline Workers Appreciation Project and distributed thank you gift bags of food and fruits to healthcare workers and first responders throughout Livingston County. In March of 2021, Livingston County Cares volunteers distributed gourmet cookies and thank you notes to 2,600 health care workers at 118 sites throughout the county. Board members also participated in the 2023 United Way Day of Caring with spring cleanup and landscape work at Providence Senior Housing on South Street in Geneseo.

Planning the Future of Livingston County Cares

Livingston County Cares invites you to continue supporting our humanitarian efforts as a participant in a future service trip (open to community residents, SUNY students, faculty/staff/alumni), as a leader engaged in identifying/organizing/managing a service trip, as a donor to our scholarship and grants fund that assist individuals with service trip expenses, as a volunteer at a local service project in Livingston County, as a volunteer and/or sponsor of our fundraising dinners (Gumbo to Go or Chili), or as a donor to Livingston County Cares natural disaster relief and recovery funds. Please consider becoming a sponsor of Livingston County Cares. You may also designate your donations to current projects and funds identified in e-newsletters, and social media, and website posts. All donors are recognized (with their permission) on our website and in our e-newsletters and the Livingston County Cares Annual Report to the Community.



Values Moving Forward

Livingston County Cares continues its mission to: Provide meaningful service trip experiences to college students and community members through disaster relief and recovery efforts; 


Act as a repository of resources and information for relief efforts by researching and identifying the best of the best non-profit agencies with minimal overhead that provide ethical and significant humanitarian services after major natural disasters and collecting donations and distributing funds to those agencies;


Support and engage in service projects and programs in collaboration with other Livingston County nonprofit and community organizations;


Continue to incubate community-based programs and projects under Livingston County Cares 501 (c) 3 non-profit public charity status until such time that those programs can become independent agencies with separate non-profit status.

Livingston County Cares Programs and Events for 2023-2024

Marketing of Livingston County Cares Service trips will begin in November and continue until all available spots are filled. Specific service trips information will be posted on our website with details about grants and scholarships and fees, payment deadlines, earning academic credit for service trips, and training sessions for trip volunteers.


Livingston County Cares has scheduled two fundraising events: Gumbo To Go Dinner on Thursday, November 9, 2023 and a new Chili Dinner on Thursday, February 1, 2024. We will also participate in the annual SEFA Campaign for state employees in November and the ROC The Day United Way of Giving on Tuesday, November 28, 2023.

Based on the experience from recent years, Livingston County Cares will continue to invite members and donors to contribute to relief and recovery funds for major natural disasters. A board committee reviews each disaster appeal and researches the non-profit charities engaged in relief and recovery efforts and donates funds to the agencies with the best track records for effective use of donated funds, including those that have the lowest overhead charges and best ethical practices for humanitarian work. Funds may also be donated to very specific projects related to a disaster. Livingston County Cares has an outstanding record for ensuring that donations are actually helping make a difference, especially to lowincome families and communities in need. Like most non-profit organizations, Livingston County Cares recognizes levels of giving: Cares Givers from $1.00 to $249.00, Cares Donors from $250.00 to $499.00, Cares Good Samaritans from $500.00 to $999.00, and Cares Humanitarians from $1,000.00 plus. Reports on donations are posted on the website, included in our monthly e-newsletters and the Livingston County Cares Annual Report to the Community

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