M&T Launches Charitable Fund in People’s United Footprint

Buffalo-based M&T Bank plans to provide $25 million in philanthropic giving as part of a three-year investment in the communities where People’s United Bank operated.

Known as “The “Amplify Fund,” the investment will be offered through the M&T Bank Charitable Foundation, M&T said in a statement. The statement noted that the investment will be M&T’s first significant philanthropic effort in People’s United Bank’s footprint.

The one-time charitable program will be operating for three years in New England and New York, M&T said, benefiting low- and moderate-income communities and underrepresented populations using racial equity and justice lens. The new funding is in addition to commitments M&T has already made as part of a $43 billion community benefits plan announced last year.

M&T completed its acquisition of the Connecticut-based People’s United in April. M&T lists 10 branches throughout New Hampshire.

“Investing in communities by understanding their specific needs and issues is the hallmark of our approach as a community-focused bank,” Mike Keegan, M&T’s senior executive vice president and head of community banking, said in the statement.

Regional bank representatives have been meeting with local leaders to help shape the program’s strategic direction, M&T said.

“Input from local leaders and community organizations will continue to be key to our success, as we bring our collective influence and resources together to make a meaningful difference in people’s lives,” Keegan said. “The Amplify Fund is one more example of how we live out our values to enable and empower our customers and communities to thrive.”

M&T said The Amplify Fund was designed “to drive sustainable impact that is equitable, accessible and responsive to local needs.”

Through input from local leaders and organizations, the bank has identified key areas for funding, including:

  • Connecticut: Mission-driven investments, including organizational capacity and programmatic initiatives
  • All six New England states: Organizations and coalitions with projects that address environmental justice and equity initiatives
  • New York: Organizations involved in community or tenant organizations with a historic connection to the community development movement

M&T plans to commit $9 million to 11 million of the funding this year, with the remaining balance of the $25 million given out in phases in 2023 and 2024.

M&T said it would release information about applying for grants in the coming weeks.