SBBC achieves its goal of becoming involved in the community in the areas of support to youth, service to individuals and families in need and support and collaboration with other organizations to effect change.  We are committed to supporting the education of our youth and providing ongoing service to the community as a whole. 

Yearly, SBBC sets agenda to facilitate the goal and objectives as indicated in its constitution.  In the last 44 years we have remain faithful to our founders' ideals.  We have supported and have received awards in the following areas:

Support to Youth


  • Awarded $324,000 in scholarship to area graduating seniors
  • Donated to Urban League Black Scholars Endowment Fund
  • Supported the United Negro College Drive
  • Conducted ongoing Life Skill Workshops for pregnant and teen parents
  • Particpated with book bags give-a-ways and "Back to School Jams"
  • Planned Black History Book Giveaway and Reading Project

Support Local Organizations


  • Scleroderma walk
  • Salvation Army Bell Ringers
  • ABW Mile Walk Campaign
  • Sponsor of Red Cross Blood Drive
  • Assisted With Clean Sweep Project
  • Community Firefighter's Smoke Detectors Drive Jericho
  • Habitat for Humanity Project

Service to Individuals and Families


  • Provide and Assist with Christmas baskets for needy families
  • Donated to Alternative For Battered Women
  • Ongoing Thanksgiving Dinners for Seniors
  • Co-sponsored "The Reuniting of the Family Conference"
  • Provided meals for the Ronald McDonald House
  • Worked with Urban League Families

Community Service Awards/Endowment


  • Urban League Service Award
  • JC Penney Community Service Award
  • Negro Women Annual Group Award
  • Monroe County Service Award
  • Key to the City of Rochester Acknowledgement
  • Kodak Youth Community Fund
  • Urenholdt Heritage Scholarship


In the last 42 years, annually SBBC, Inc. has sponsored a Scholarship Fashion Show/Luncheon.  This is our major fundraiser.  Last year, we supported 11 students with $11,000 in scholarships.  To-date we have given over $346,000 in scholarship awards to deserving high school seniors in the Rochester Area.

We are grateful to the Rochester Community for your wonderful support and encouragement with this Scholarship luncheon, our Signature project.  The community needs as many hands that are willing to sacrifice their love and work for our great city.  Together let us make it greater!  


Elizabeth Cowart


Retired from Kodak as a Chemical Processor & Packager. Joined SBBC in January 1993. I enjoy working with SBBC community service projects involving young mothers  and  senior citizens.

Margo Crews


I am a retired Kodak Assembler. I joined SBBC in 1994. I believe SBBC makes an impact by providing our children with scholarships.

Sadie Dukes


Member of SBBC since 1995.  I joined SBBC to make a difference in the Rochester community. Through Christ all things are possible.

Sharon Hawkins


I joined SBBC in December 2012. I am proud to be a part of a great organization which plays a vital part in the community. Sisters have afforded me the opportunity to be of service to the community.

Beverly Huitt


I joined SBBC in 1982. It is a rewarding experience to be a part of this service oriented organization. Because of SBBC's many service projects, I am extremely committed to the youth and seniors in the community

Cora Jones


Retired Exelis Inc.  Executive Admin. Assistant. Member of SBBC since 2001.  It is important to me that our young people reach their fullest potential in life. Joining SBBC has given me the opportunity and privilege to serve in the Community.

Edna Norton


Retired Administrator of RCSD. I joined SBBC a month after it was organized in October 1971. I feel that what we have been doing for over 46 years greatly benefit the Rochester Community.  I am blessed and truly thankful to be a part of SBBC.

Vikki Patterson


Sales Associate of Sears.  Member of SBBC since 2014. It was very rewarding to becoming a member of SBBC because of its commitment to serve the Rochester Community.

Yolanda Wooten


Retired RCSD Math Teacher. A member of SBBC since 1975. I believe in the importance of education to empower our youth. SBBC is an organization that fosters this nurturing and caring for the young and old in the Rochester Community.

Sisters Helping Others


Rochester Community Partners


Community Donations


SBBC Founders


The Beginning

In the early 70’s, about 15,000 southern African Americans moved to northern cities for jobs. Some settled in Rochester New York where many found jobs at Eastman Kodak. During this time period in Rochester, there was racial unrest especially within the schools.  Since these new arrivals to Rochester knew very few people, a group of Kodak workers bonded together and formed a weekly social fellowship of men and women. One of the young ladies in the group, Arelia Smith, felt that there was a need for serious community support. So she and 6 others young ladies decided to organize a group to address their concerns.  This group, Sisters For A Better Black Community (SBBC) was founded in Rochester, New York by these 7 women in the fall of 1971. SBBC’s mission was to promote a better relationship among the Black community of Rochester and its surrounding areas. Arelia became its 1st president. During her tenure, SBBC grew in service, membership and adopted a constitution and by-laws. This group was later incorporated as Sisters for a Better Black Community, Inc., (SBBC, Inc.).

For more information about our Founder click on the link below:

Member Application

Join us in serving our community to make it a better place for everyone!!!