June 30, 2022

June Recalls on Children’s Products

Parents and caregivers should be aware of several child-related product recalls.

Learn More

Here is a list of June recalls collected from the major federal agencies: the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Food and Drug Administration and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

More Information

For recall details, visit the links above or review the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Food and Drug Administration and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration websites.


June 28, 2022

Summer Food Assistance Programs and Distribution Locations Available

With the 2021-22 school year in the past, numerous organizations throughout Allegheny County are helping to feed children, as well as provide meals and groceries to local families, during the summer months. Organizations such as the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank and the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh have various summer food programs and distribution locations to fill the gap of meals children usually have during the school year.

Find a Local Summer Food Assistance Program

If you or someone you know is in need of food assistance during the summer, view the list below for information about available summer programs and services:

Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank Distribution

Starting in July 2022, distributions will be moving from pre-packed boxes to, instead, distributing a mix of loose grocery items in family sized portions. Two distribution options will be offered: a drive-up where volunteers will pack your trunk while you stay in your car and a walk-in event where you can pick-up food indoors. Learn more

Summer Meals at the Library

Meals are for youth ages 18 and younger and those with disabilities up to age 21. Summer Meals are being offered locally in collaboration with Pittsburgh CitiParks as part of the federally funded Summer Food Service Program. For dates, times, and locations, visit the Carnegie Library website.  

Summer Youth Cafe

The Summer Youth Cafe (known nationally as the Summer Food Program) is a federal nutrition program from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to provide kids and teens with healthy meals over the summer months. These sites are open to anyone 18 years old or younger, and there is no cost. Families can find a Summer Youth Café by texting “FOOD” to 304-304 or by calling 2-1-1 for the United Way hotline. Learn more.

Citiparks’ Summer Food Service Program 2022 (GrubUp!)

The 2022 Summer Food Service Program began Wednesday, June 22, 2022. Breakfast is served from 9 to 10 a.m. lunch is served from noon to 2 p.m. For additional information, visit the website or contact Citiparks Food Programs Office at 412.571.3291.

Just Harvest Fresh Access

The Fresh Access program enables shoppers to use their food stamps – as well as credit and debit cards – to buy fresh, nutritious, and locally-grown food. Food Bucks give food stamp shoppers an extra $2.00 to spend on fruits and veggies for every $5 they spend. Fresh Access services are available in Allegheny County at 15 farmers markets during the 2022 farmers market season. The season runs May to November, and at one market from December through March 2023. Learn more.

USDA Meals for Kids Site Finder

Families seeking food assistance for their children can contact the USDA National Hunger Hotline, operated by Hunger Free America. The hotline can be reached Monday through Friday between 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET. at 1.866.3.HUNGRY (1.866.348.6479) (for English) or 1.877.8.HAMBRE (1.877.842.6273) (for Spanish). Learn more.

Families can type their location or address into the interactive map to find directions to nearby sites as well as hours of operation and contact information.


June 27, 2022

Apply: Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8) Waiting List

The Allegheny County Housing Authority will accept applications for the Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8) waiting list from Tuesday, July 12, through Thursday July 14.

About the Housing Choice Voucher Program

The ACHA provides safe and decent affordable housing for low-income residents of Allegheny County and offers two main housing programs: the Housing Choice Voucher Program and Public Housing.

The Housing Choice Voucher Program is a rental assistance program where residents rent directly from private landlords and their rental payments are subsidized through the voucher program.


Applicants must meet certain eligibility requirements for admission into the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program:

  • qualify as a family;
  • have an income within the federally mandated income limits;
  • meet citizen/eligible immigrant criteria;
  • provide documentation of valid Social Security numbers;
  • sign consent authorization documents
  • the ACHA will perform criminal background reviews for each adult household member


Applications will be accepted from 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, July 12, to 3:30 p.m. on Thursday July 14. Individuals can apply online at; computers also will be available at the ACHA office at 301 Chartiers Ave, McKees Rocks, PA.

All applicants are processed and placed on a waiting list. Results of the waiting list order will be posted online by July 22. Applicants MUST keep their confirmation number in order to access status.

For details, visit the ACHA website.


June 24, 2022

COVID-19 Vaccine Authorized for Children Six Months through Four Years

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorized the emergency use of the Pfizer-BioNTec and Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine for the prevention of COVID-19 to include children six months through four years of age. The authorization was based on the FDA’s thorough and transparent evaluation of the data that included input from independent advisory committee experts who overwhelmingly voted in favor of making the vaccine available to children in this age group.

About the COVID-19 Vaccine 

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for children six months through four years of age is administered as a three-dose primary series, three- to eight weeks apart, but is a lower dose (3 micrograms) than that used for individuals 12 years of age and older (10 micrograms). The Moderna vaccine is a two-dose vaccine (25 micrograms) series: the second four to eight weeks after the first.

Distribution of pediatric vaccinations for these younger children has started across the country, and will be available at thousands of pediatric practices, pharmacies, Federally Qualified Health Centers, local health departments, clinics, and other locations this week. Children in this younger age group can be vaccinated with whichever vaccine is available (either Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech). Parents can reach out to their doctor, nurse, local pharmacy, or health department, or visit to see where vaccines for children are available.  

Additional Information

Additional information on the COVID-19 vaccine can be found on the FDA website.


June 20, 2022

2022 Keystone STARS Program Manual Available

The new 2022 Keystone STARS Program Manual is now available on the Pennsylvania Key website.

About the Keystone STARS Program Manual

The program manual provides information on the updates and edits made to the 2022 Keystone STARS Performance Standards and includes:

  • Information on the updated Internal Assessment Process (IAP)

  • Expanded information on Professional Development (PD) including PD Registry requirements in Keystone STARS

  • Updated Keystone STARS Bonus Point Tip Sheets

  • Hyperlinks to the updated forms and templates for use in Keystone STARS

The 2022 Keystone STARS Standards take effect on July 1, 2022. Access the 2022 Keystone STARS Standards and accompanying resource documents at the Pennsylvania Key website.


June 18, 2022

Free Summer Camp Curriculum Available for Teachers

The Learning Lamp, a Pennsylvania-based program that aims children, families, and schools greater options for improving academic achievement, is offering free summer camp curriculums for teachers.

Learn More

The curriculum, Best Day Ever!, is designed by teachers for teachers. Lesson plans are available for preschool and school-age students.

Each weekly themed unit features high-interest topics, engaging hands-on activities, and opportunities for children to learn and grow. Lessons are aligned with the PA learning standards and can be adapted to meet the needs and interests of individual students. The curriculum was partially funded by the Community Foundation for the Alleghenies and was written in partnership with the Early Childhood Education (ECE) Professional Development Organization (PDO) at the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE).

Access the Curriculum

Educators can access the curriculum by registering on the Learning Lamp website.

There are six school-age units and six preschool units available for free through the pilot project. In exchange, the Learning Lamp is asking providers to complete a survey for each unit used. Anyone who completes the survey is automatically registered for a $200 Amazon gift card drawing.


June 17, 2022

New Text4FamilyServices Available for Head Start Professionals

On June 16, The National Center on Parent, Family, and Community Engagement (NCPFCE) launched its new Text4FamilyServices. The text messaging service is dedicated to supporting and enhancing the vital work of Head Start and Early Head Start family services professionals, supervisors, and other staff who work directly with families.


Text4FamilyServices is a messaging service that supports the work of Head Start and Early Head Start family services staff, their supervisors, and other program staff who work with families.

Individuals who sign up, will receive free text messages, including:

  • Two to three texts messages per month with information and links to helpful resources to strengthen their practice with families
  • Additional messages about:
    • Upcoming parent, family, and community engagement (PFCE) professional development opportunities and new resources
    • Office of Head Start campaigns and initiatives


To subscribe for Text4FamilyServices, text PFCE to (toll-free) 833-302-0206. Select your job title [family services staff, supervisor, other] and preferred language [English or Spanish] to start receiving free PFCE (Parent, Families and Community Engagement) text messages.

Text STOP to (toll-free) 833-302-0206 to unsubscribe or HELP for technical assistance or reach out to

Learn more about Text4FamilyServices.


June 16, 2022

Expanded Food Assistance Eligibility for Families Facing Food Insecurity

More Pennsylvanians experiencing food insecurity are now eligible for support from Pennsylvania’s network of food banks and pantries. Income eligibility for both the State Food Purchase Program (SFPP) and The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), U.S. Department of Agriculture-funded programs administered at the state level, have been raised from 150% of the USDA-established poverty level to 185%.


The income eligibility increase allows Pennsylvania’s charitable food system to serve more food insecure individuals who make just above the current income limit. It also brings the SFPP and TEFAP in line with other food assistance programs such as SNAP, reduced-price school breakfast and lunches provided through the National School Lunch and Breakfast Program, and the Farmers Market Nutrition Program.


Pennsylvanians experiencing food insecurity are encouraged to explore the following programs:

More Information

Details of the new regulation and income requirements can be found in the PA Bulletin.

Find resources for local food assistance and learn more about the Wolf Administration’s steps to reduce food insecurity in Pennsylvania at


June 15, 2022

Celebrate Juneteenth in the Pittsburgh Region

Several organizations in the Pittsburgh area are hosting Juneteenth celebrations this weekend.

Juneteenth is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating emancipation of enslaved African Americans. It is also often observed for celebrating African-American culture.


Pittsburgh Juneteenth Freedom Day

Pittsburgh will celebrate the Western Pennsylvania Juneteenth Homecoming Celebration June 17-19 from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Point State Park and Market Square. This free, family-friendly event is a Celebration of all Cities and Boroughs in Allegheny County and will feature African American Culture Education, speakers, live music, and local vendors. Details are online.

Juneteeth Carnival Jubilee

Join Focus on Renewal for a community celebration on Saturday, June 20, from 12:30 to 6 p.m. Entertainment includes performances, music, vendors, free children’s activities, games, and more. Details are on the Focus on Renewal website.

Swissvale Celebrates Juneteenth

This year, the Juneteenth Celebration will take place on Saturday, June 18, from noon to 8 p.m. at Les Getz Memorial Park from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. on June 18th. Activities will include music, vendors, a local artist exhibition and a writing contest. Learn More.

Juneteenth Makers Market

Bakery Square is hosting a Juneteenth Makers Market on Sunday, June 19, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. to feature the art and voices of the black community.

Celebrate Juneteenth at the Macedonia FACE Book Jam

The Macedonia Family and Community Enrichment Center, Inc. event will be on Monday, June 20, from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Thelma Lovette YMCA Gymnasium and will feature a DJ, family prizes and activities, and books and school supplies for children of all ages. Learn more.


Infant Formula Bank at Homewood Early Learning Hub & Family Center

The Homewood Early Learning Hub & Family Center is now an infant formula bank location of the Greater Pittsburgh Infant Formula Bank.

About the Greater Pittsburgh Infant Formula Bank

Managed by Beverly’s Birthdays and their baby division, Beverly’s Babies, The Greater Pittsburgh Infant Formula Bank is a resource to support families in need of baby formula during a personal, situational, or financial emergency/crisis.

There are three formula banks available for the public to directly access for support:

  • The Homewood Family Center & Early Learning Hub
    • 7219 Kelly St, Pittsburgh, PA 15208
    • 412.545.5039
  • Beverly’s Birthdays Headquarters
    • 9799 Laurel Avenue, North Huntingdon, PA 15642
    • 724.590.5106 or 412.720.9737
  • The McKeesport Family Center
    • 339 5th Ave, McKeesport, PA 15132
    • 412.672.6970

Two additional locations will become available on July 18:

  • Hilltop Family Center – (Mount Oliver)
  • Highlands Family Center (Tarentum)

A family can visit any of the formula banks, but the client (child) can receive only 12 standard cans (12.4 ounces) of infant formula per year and no more than two standard cans per visit. A visit is defined as one service within a 24-hour period.

More Information

Details about the program are available online. Families in need can call 724-590-5106 or text pghformula to 844-511-1544.