Bank of America Donates $200,000 to Life’s WORC

Caroline Pisaniello (Public Affairs), Denise Walsh (Community Services), Nicki Faranda (Community Services), Janet Koch (Executive Director), Bob Isaksen (Bank of America LI Market President), Renee Daniel Flagler (LIFE’S WORC Board member), Pamela Curtiss (Employment), and John Pfeifer (Residential Services).

Life’s WORC and United Veterans Beacon House have been named as the 2019 Bank of America Neighborhood Builders® awardees for Long Island.

The nonprofits were selected for their work in the Long Island area to address issues fundamental to economic mobility, specifically housing for veteran and nonveteran communities, and services and support for families and people with developmental disabilities. As an awardee, each organization receives a $200,000 grant, a year of leadership training for the executive director and an emerging leader at the organization, a network of peer organizations across the U.S., and the opportunity to access capital to expand their impact.

“Through the Neighborhood Builders Program, nonprofits have the power to grow strategically and have a precise impact on issues that uniquely face the Long Island community,” said Bob Isaksen, Long Island Market President of Bank of America. “Long Island is home to a large veteran population, and we’re proud to award our friends at United Veterans Beacon House support for their work helping veterans and nonveterans. I’m also happy to announce our support for a group that is new to us, but certainly not to the Long Island community, for the compassionate, tailored support they offer those with developmental disabilities and their families: Life’s WORC.” 

Over the past 15 years, Bank of America has invested $240 million in 49 communities through Neighborhood Builders, partnering with more than 1,000 nonprofits and helping more than 2,000 nonprofit leaders strengthen their leadership skills.

Life’s WORC is a nonprofit that supports people with developmental disabilities and autism on Long Island. This is the first time Bank of America has provided support to the organization, which was chosen for its important work for those living with developmental disabilities, as well as their families. This includes home support, skills development and behavioral intervention, social recreational programs, and vocational training opportunities. Life’s WORC aims to enable people to achieve their personal best, no matter their abilities or challenges.

“We are honored by Bank of America’s support of our WORCforce Builders Proposal,” said Janet Koch, Chief Executive Officer of Life’s WORC. “Life’s WORC is committed to creating innovative employment initiatives to ensure that people with special needs can integrate into our community’s work force, We are grateful to Bank of America for partnering with us to advance this effort.  With this support, Bank of America has proven both its commitment to the special needs population and to the community in we which we all live and work.”

Fellow awardee United Veterans Beacon House has a longstanding relationship with Bank of America. United Veterans Beacon House collaborates with other organizations to assist the veteran and homeless populations on Long Island. Some of the vital services Beacon House provides veterans are supportive housing, emergency shelters, case management, transportation, and counseling. Beacon House provides nonveterans with housing services as well.

“I am grateful and privileged — on behalf of United Veterans Beacon House to accept the Neighborhood Builders award from Bank of America,” said Frank Amalfitano, president and CEO of United Veterans Beacon House. “This generous recognition of our work in support of
veterans will go a long way in helping us to provide meaningful aid to those who’ve served our nation. Lighting the way toward a brighter future for veterans is what we do; Bank of America is a true and determined partner in that forever effort, and we are so thrilled that they have chosen us as there are many worthy organizations to work beside us in this cause.”

Since 2005, through its Neighborhood Builders program, Bank of America has partnered with 14 nonprofits on Long Island, investing over $5.5 million dollars to provide financial education and economic mobility opportunities in local communities. The invitation-only program is highly competitive, and leading members of the community participated in a collaborative selection process to identify this year’s awardees. Examples of the leadership training topics include human capital management, increasing financial sustainability, and storytelling. Neighborhood Builders is just one example of how Bank of America deploys capital in communities, builds cross-sector partnerships, and promotes socioeconomic progress as part of its approach to responsible growth.

Editor’s note: Life’s WORC was founded by Victoria Schneps-Yunis, found of Schneps Media, the parent company of the Long Island Press.