Local Charity Reaches Major Milestone in Giving

November 7, 2018

Written By

Mary Friona Celani

The Jim Harszlak Foundation has reached a major milestone when it comes to giving – after six years they have given away a total of $102,004.00!

The foundation is named after a man who spent his life giving and helping others, until he died from Colon Cancer in 2012.

Jim’s widow, Susan Holler Harszlak has worked hard to continue to shine a light on her husband’s legacy and the work they do is simply amazing. For Sue, it’s a labor of love, “I am blessed that we can continue Jim’s spirit of giving through every person we help,” Sue said, “This helps to heal my broken heart and with every donation our love story continues.”

Every year, the majority of their donations come from their annual event, Harzfest. Held the first Saturday in March, the event is always embraced by the community. Each year, money raised goes to help a designated person or family. This year, the Harzfest ticket donation went to Ed Mlynarski and family to help them with medical bills for his Liver Cancer Treatments.


The first Harzfest Event-Fundraiser was in February 2012, to help with Jim’s growing medical expenses and to gather friends and family together.

The Jim Harszlak Foundation was formed on September 12, 2012, the day he died at just 56-years old. They’ve been going strong for six years now.

The work they do is felt in the community.

The foundation recently made a donation to help local veterans with Thanksgiving and Christmas needs.

They’ve helped children battling cancer and other awful diseases.

Thanks to their incredible group of volunteers, they’ve helped adults and families with medical bills, grocery bills and other living expenses.

They give out scholarships to Tonawanda, North Tonawanda, and Bethesda Youth Group students.

They partner with the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Northtowns helping children reach their full potential.

They help local organizations like Warmth for Hungry Hearts, St. Francis Outreach, Christmas for Kids and many others.

Yes, their work is felt in the community.


They focus on giving life experiences like vacations, they’ve helped install ramps for those in need. They give and give and give. They can’t do it alone -Sue says the support they receive is immeasurable, “All of this is possible because of our volunteers, community donations and support over the last 6 years. We are a small local foundation, that is funded by local financial support.”

All in the name and memory of a man who did that his entire life.

They say they’re lucky to have given away $102,004 in just over six years. I say, as a community, we are lucky to have such caring and giving people to help those in need.

For more information on this wonderful organization – or to make a donation – visit their website at jimharszlakfoundation.com.
facebook: @jim.harszlak

You can also find them on FACEBOOK.


About Me

Welcome to Totally Buffalo! My name is Mary Friona-Celani and I am the creator of this site! After spending 20 years in the Buffalo media, I moved on to focus on my beautiful family. Now, the time has come for a new project. I was ready for something new. Something mine.
I am born and raised in WNY and my pride runs deep. My husband, Scott and I are very happy to be raising our four daughters here.






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