Foundation Support and Production Funding

The Foundation and Community Development Department secures grant funding for television and radio productions, education and outreach, as well as for equipment and building needs.

Funders who are interested in productions or initiatives are encouraged to contact us to receive details about programs in need of funding. 

Current projects in various stages of production include:

Production Support and Production Funding icon


Understanding the Opioid Epidemic

This national broadcast documentary explores the critical issue of painkiller abuse and addiction.  Part of this project includes developing outreach materials which will focus on the issue of prevention for middle and high school students.

Funder: BlueCross Blue Shield Association

The Ralph Wilson Story

This program will share the story of Ralph Wilson, Jr., former owner of the Buffalo Bills and well known philanthropist, in a television documentary celebrating his life, love for football and commitment to the people of both cities. 


Co-funder: New Era Cap Co. Inc.

The Warrior Tradition

This is a one-hour documentary on the story of the involvement and contribution of Native Americans in the military throughout American history.  The project will contain an extensive website and a content-rich educational component.

The Great Lakes: North America’s Freshwater Coast

This one-hour documentary special will explore the past, present and future of the Great Lakes.  The project will also feature educational materials, a comprehensive website and digital community engagement.



Great Lakes Today

Great Lakes Today, a public radio collaborative, increases coverage of the iconic lakes and the people who live in the region.  The initiative develops in-depth reports focused on three areas: use and quality of this freshwater resource, economic importance of the region, and future challenges and opportunities.

Funder: Corporation for Public Broadcasting

WBFO News Desks

As a way to enhance, expand and focus WBFO’s new coverage, the station has established several content specific Desks.  Each of these Desks focuses on a specific subject.  Current News Desks include: Arts and Culture; Business and Economy; Education; and Health and Wellness.  Desks seeking funding: Science and Technology and Military and Veterans.


Education and Outreach:

PBS KIDS Writers Contest

This national-local contest is designed to promote the advancement of children’s literacy skills through hands-on, active learning.  The Contest encourages children in grades K-3 in communities across the country to celebrate the power of creating stories and illustrations by submitting their own original pieces.  

Funder: Medaille College



Lori Bannister

Sr. Director/Foundation & Community Development



Kelly Sheldon

Manager of Foundation and Community Development

716-845-7000 ext. 352

Previous productions include:

The War of 1812

With stunning re-enactments, evocative animation and the incisive commentary of key experts, this national PBS documentary presents the conflict that forged the destiny of a continent.


Funders: The National Endowment for the Humanities; The Wilson Foundation; Warren and Barbara Goldring; the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; The Arthur Vining Foundations; Philip B. Lind; The Annenberg Foundation; The Baird Foundation, Niagara Falls Bridge Commission; and The Jackman Foundation.

Frederick law Olmsted: Designing America

This national PBS documentary explores the life and legacy of America’s greatest landscape architect.  The film explores the enormous contributions of Olmsted to the American landscape, as well as his marked failures and loss.


Funders: National Endowments for the Humanities; The Margaret L. Wendt Foundation; HSBC, the Tiffany & Co. Foundation; C.E. and S. Foundation, The Peter C. Cornell Trust; and Mass Humanities.

The Adirondacks

The story of the Adirondacks is told through a series of passionate characters, each with a distinct perspective on its past, present and future. This national PBS program explores this remarkable region and reveals, at its very heart, a delicate and dynamic relationship between progress and preservation.


Funders: The Kevin T. and Betty Ann Keane Family; The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation; PBS; Adirondack Council; I Love NY; The Lyme Timer Company; and Ted and Lisa Pierce.

Hockey More Than A Game

Hockey: More Than A Game

This documentary celebrates one of the fastest, most challenging games in the world, relaying its Canadian spirit, traditions and dramatic human stories.  Exploring hockey history and culture, this national program offers an insightful look at the game described as “Canada’s gift to the world.”


Funders: New Era Cap Co., Inc.; NOCO; Frank L. Ciminelli Family Foundation; the Consulate General of Canada in Buffalo; and the Royal Bank of Canada.