About

Concerned Ecumenical Ministry (CEM) is a human service agency located on the west side of Buffalo, NY at the corner of Lafayette and Parkdale Avenues. We offer programs for children and youth, seniors, and emergency food services for those who are in need.

In 1967 local clergy and lay members began meeting together and talking about how to coordinate programs for children during the summer. They were able to recruit volunteers from colleges near and far to come and spend the summer working with inner city children who needed supervised activities. The first year was more successful that anyone expected and the leaders began to think about additional programs and services. One congregation began to sponsor a weekly dance for teens. Seniors began to meet for social activities. The religious leaders began to plan for interfaith worship services. Volunteers went door to door soliciting contributions to support the programs.

As the organization began to grow staff members were hired. Fund-raising become more formal. In 1984 volunteers decided that it was time to start an emergency food program. One of the congregations offered to share its building with the agency. A public/private effort to raise funds for building renovations ensued.

Today CEM offers a variety of programs through the support of individuals, congregations, denominations, governmental agencies, businesses, and foundations. CEM provides for the needs of many in the community – a place to learn, to socialize, to get help navigating entitlement programs, to eat a nutritious meal, to get emergency groceries, to matter, to make a difference.