It's a Match! Rochester Nonprofit and Ford Friendship Express Van are Perfect Fit

New Ford van awarded to ABVI-Goodwill; Camp Good Days and Special Times and Catholic Family Center each received cash donations

Three nonprofits selected a "token of friendship" hoping to make a match and receive the keys to a new Ford van
Three nonprofits selected a "token of friendship" hoping to make a match and receive the keys to a new Ford van
  • Three nonprofits selected a "token of friendship" hoping to make a match and receive the keys to a new Ford van
    Three nonprofits selected a "token of friendship" hoping to make a match and receive the keys to a new Ford van
    Three nonprofits selected a "token of friendship" hoping to make a match and receive the keys to a new Ford van
    Three nonprofits selected a "token of friendship" hoping to make a match and receive the keys to a new Ford van
  • Ford Friendship Express Selection Committee member, Aki Henderson, completes the "token of friendship" with Tracy Schleyer of ABVI-Goodwill, the 2012 Ford Friendship Express van recipient.
    Ford Friendship Express Selection Committee member, Aki Henderson, completes the "token of friendship" with Tracy Schleyer of ABVI-Goodwill, the 2012 Ford Friendship Express van recipient.
    Ford Friendship Express Selection Committee member, Aki Henderson, completes the "token of friendship" with Tracy Schleyer of ABVI-Goodwill, the 2012 Ford Friendship Express van recipient.
    Ford Friendship Express Selection Committee member, Aki Henderson, completes the "token of friendship" with Tracy Schleyer of ABVI-Goodwill, the 2012 Ford Friendship Express van recipient.

ROCHESTER, NY – Earlier today, the Rochester Area Ford Dealers donated a new Ford Transit Connect passenger van to ABVI-Goodwill, a premier provider of vision rehabilitation services to people who are blind or visually impaired throughout the Greater Rochester, Finger Lakes, and Southern Tier areas of New York. Through the Ford Friendship Express program, the Ford Dealers have awarded 13 vans, valued at nearly $300,000, to Rochester-area nonprofit organizations.

“The Ford Friendship Express program strives to provide basic transportation to local nonprofit organizations so that they can better serve the Rochester community,” said Aki Henderson, representative for the Ford Friendship Express Selection Committee. “ABVI will use the Ford Transit Connect van to implement a door-to-door donation service to help increase overall donations to its Goodwill stores and bring in funds to support its mission.”

The Ford Friendship Express Selection Committee received nearly 30 applications from nonprofit organizations this year. The committee narrowed the selection down to three finalists and invited them to the Rochester International Auto Show to reveal the van recipient. The finalists each received half of a friendship token. Simultaneously, the finalists held up their token half hoping to match the other half held by the Ford Dealers. Tracy Schleyer, Vice President of Development at ABVI-Goodwill, made a perfect “match” - completing the “Token of Friendship” and receiving keys to the 2012 Ford Friendship Express van.

The two runner-up organizations were surprised with a cash donation of $2,500 each to support their daily operations. They are Camp Good Days and Special Times, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for children, adults and families whose lives have been touched by cancer and other life challenges; and Catholic Family Center, Rochester's largest family service provider that helps nearly 38,000 people in Monroe and Wayne Counties each year achieve independence with dignity.

Past Ford Friendship Express recipients include: Mary Cariola Children’s Center, The Academy for Career Development, Boys and Girls Club of Rochester, Easter Seals New York, Foodlink, Rochester St. Martin’s Boxing Club, Salvation Army, The Society for the Protection and Care of Children, Hickok Center for Brain Injury, Wilson Commencement Park, and more.

About the Rochester Area Ford Dealers
The Rochester Area Ford Dealers are part of the Western New York Ford Stores, an advertising cooperative comprised of 31 dealer locations that provides support for Ford vehicle sales and service in the 13 counties of Western New York and Rochester, and two counties in Northern Pennsylvania.

About ABVI-Goodwill
The Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired (ABVI), founded in 1911, is a premier provider of vision rehabilitation services to people who are blind or visually impaired throughout the Greater Rochester, Finger Lakes, and Southern Tier areas of New York. As part of its mission-focused work, ABVI, an affiliate of Goodwill of the Finger Lakes, empowers people with vision loss to engage in fulfilling careers.