November 30, 2022

December 2022 Food Resources

Organizations throughout Allegheny County will provide meal distributions and resources to serve those needing food assistance through December.

Food Distribution Events

Winter Craft and Farmers Market – City of Pittsburgh

Homewood Healthy Center / Homewood HAL Senior Center, 7321 Frankstown Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15208 | Monday, 12/05, 4 – 7 p.m.

Hand-crafted gifts, stocking stuffers, fresh food and much more from a variety of local vendors.

View the event flyer for more details.

Braddock, East Pittsburgh, and North Braddock Community Dinner – Grounded Strategies

Braddock’s Battlefield History Center, 609 6th Street, Braddock, PA 15104 | Tuesday, 12/06 6 – 8 p.m.

Take part in a catered feedback session on how to turn vacant land into a creative placemaking opportunity in the B.E.N. region.

For more information, visit the event page.

Food Pantry – Allison Park

NHCO Allison Park, 1975 Ferguson Road, Allison Park, PA 15101 | Tuesday, 12/06, 5 – 7 p.m.

You may attend one food pantry session per month. No documentation required. If you have questions, please call 412.487.6316.

Food Pantry – North Boroughs

Greenstone Methodist Church – NHCO Office, 939 California Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15202

  • Thursday, 12/08 | 5 – 7 p.m.

  • Thursday, 12/22 | 2 – 4 p.m.

You may attend one food pantry session per month. No documentation required. If you have questions, please call 412.487.6316.

Food Pantry – Millvale

Millvale Community Center, 416 Lincoln Ave., Millvale, PA 15209 | Wednesday, 12/21, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

You may attend one food pantry session per month. No documentation required. If you have questions, please call 412.487.6316.

Jubilee Soup Kitchen – Christmas Lunch 2022

2005 Wyandotte Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15219 | Sunday, 12/25, Dine In: 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. / Takeout: 11:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

A Christmas Day lunch for dine in or takeout will be provided. For more information on Jubilee Soup Kitchen, contact 412.261.5417 or

Jubilee Soup Kitchen – New Year’s Lunch 2023

2005 Wyandotte Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15219 | Sunday, 01/01/23, Dine In: 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. / Takeout: 11:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

A special lunch to ring in the New Year will be provided. For more information on Jubilee Soup Kitchen, contact 412.261.5417 or

December Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank Distribution Schedules

Allegheny County Drive-Up Distribution Schedule

  • Wilkinsburg (This distribution will have pre-packed boxes)
    225 Penn Ave. (Intersection of Penn Ave. and N. Trenton), Pittsburgh, PA 15221
    Tuesday, 12/03 | 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

  • Allegheny Valley
    JC Penney at the Galleria, 590 Pittsburgh Mills Blvd., Tarentum, PA 15084
    Tuesday, 12/13 | 4:30 – 6 p.m.

  • McKeesport
    Founders Hall Middle School, 1960 Eden Park Blvd., McKeesport, PA 15132
    Saturday, 12/17 | 10 – 11:30 a.m.

  • West End
    Ascension Church, 114 Berry St., Pittsburgh, PA 15205
    Tuesday, 12/12 | 4 – 5:30 p.m.

Allegheny County Walk-In Distribution Schedule

  • Homewood
    Faison K-5, 7430 Tioga St., Pittsburgh, PA 15208
    Saturday, 12/10, 10 a.m. – Noon

  • Northside
    Pittsburgh King PreK – 8, 50 Montgomery Place, Pittsburgh, PA 15212
    Saturday, 12/10, 10 a.m. – Noon

  • South Side (This distribution will have pre-packed boxes)
    Southside Market House, 12th and Bingham Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15203
    Wednesday, 12/21, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Find food resources based on zip code or region by visiting the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank Find Food online tool.

The Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank Market is an onsite pantry where eligible neighbors can shop for grocery items at no cost.

Hours: Monday through Friday

  • 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

  • 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

*Please arrive no later than 15 minutes prior to closing.

Find more information and the 2023 distribution calendar, visit the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank website.


November 29, 2022

Enroll for Discounted Transportation Fares

The Allegheny County Department of Human Services (DHS) is seeking Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients ages 18 through 64 to participate in a 12-month pilot program to understand the impact of transportation affordability on low-income residents.

About the Allegheny County Discounted Fares Pilot Program

The goal of the Allegheny County Discounted Fares Pilot Program is to test new policies to help people connect with services and opportunities that will benefit themselves, their families, and their communities.

This will include examining the effect of the reduced fares pilot on participants’ use of public transit, their access to jobs and services, and their socioeconomic well-being.

How does the pilot work?

Participation in the pilot is voluntary. Eligible participants will be randomly assigned to one of three groups, with an equal chance of being assigned to each group:

  1. Free fares: This group will receive unlimited free fares on all Pittsburgh Regional Transit (PRT) trips (bus, T, and incline) for 12 months
  2. 50% discount: This group will receive a ConnectCard (pre-loaded with $10) that reduces the cost of all PRT trips by half (50%) for 12 months
  3. No discount: This group will receive a ConnectCard pre-loaded with $10 but will not receive a fare discount through this pilot.

Participants will be asked to complete optional surveys about once every three months and will be compensated as a “thank you” for completing each survey.

Details about the pilot, eligibility, and how to apply are available on the Allegheny County Discounted Fares Pilot Program website.


November Recalls on Children’s Products

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

Learn More

Here is a list of November 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.


November 28, 2022

Focus On the Future: Market Research Survey

The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) is one of the lead professional membership association for all who care for, educate, and work on behalf of young children, birth through age 8.

Given the blow that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the child care and early learning sector, NAEYC is conducting a survey to see how the organization and its network of affiliates can best meet the needs of child care providers and what they value.


Survey responses will help the NAEYC network better understand the more specific needs of the early childhood education field, what products and services providers are looking for as professionals working in service of young children, and how the NAEYC network can continue to deepen their work and expertise as early childhood professionals.

The survey should take 15-25 minutes to complete and must be completed in one sitting. Respondents will be entered into a raffle where 100 winners will be chosen for a $250 Visa gift card.

Take the survey.

For more information, reach out to at


November 23, 2022

Nominations Open for the 2023 Voice for Children Award

Do you know an outstanding early childhood professional who is using their voice to advocate for young children and families? Nominate them for the 2023 Voice for Children Award!

About the Voice Awards

The Pennsylvania Association for the Education of Young Children (PennAEYC) recognizes the critical role advocacy plays in high quality early learning settings and celebrates those who speak on behalf of Pennsylvania’s children.

The VOICE for Children Award is the only statewide award in Pennsylvania that recognizes early care and education professionals, who are not paid advocates, that go above and beyond their daily work in the field by being grassroots leaders through advocacy and public policy efforts.

The winners will be honored at the VOICE for Children Award Reception and Dinner on Friday, March 31, 2023 at the Hershey Lodge in Hershey.

Nomination Criteria

Nominees must:

  • Display dispositions of a model early childhood advocate, including (but not exclusive to) serving as an expert witness, providing public testimony, appearing in media, serving on a board in a public policy capacity, receiving distinctive honors or awards for previous advocacy work, leading advocacy campaigns or actions, working with leaders and elected officials, and/or recognized as an early childhood leader in their community.

  • Be a current member of PennAEYC to be considered.

Nominate an Educator

Nominations must be submitted no later than Friday, December 9, 2022. To submit a nomination, complete this nomination form and email it to Senior Director of Public Policy and Advocacy Kimberly Early at Please add “2023 VOICE Nomination” in your email subject line.

Visit the PennAEYC website for more information on the VOICE for Children Award Event.


November 22, 2022

Support Trying Together on GivingTuesday

Join Trying Together, your neighbors, and the global community on Tuesday, November 29, 2022, in #GivingTogether this #GivingTuesday.

First established in 2012, GivingTuesday is a global generosity movement that unleashes the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world. It’s also an opportunity for people to stand together in unity—to use their individual power of generosity to support and champion the organizations and causes they care about.

Support Our Work

Trying Together values caregivers of young children. To honor them and the incredible work they do, Trying Together:

  • curates and creates family resources to highlight available services, helpful articles, and more;
  • provides technical assistance and professional opportunities to support early educators in expanding their expertise and careers;
  • advocates to policymakers to ensure that children, families, and early care and education programs and professionals are prioritized; and
  • collaborates with communities to assist them in reaching their goals for themselves, and their families.

Your contribution can help Trying Together continue to support the work of early childhood. Learn more on our website.


November 16, 2022

Keystone STARS Designation Certificates Updated

The Keystone STARS Designation Certificates have undergone an update and redesign since they were last issued in 2016.

About the Updates

The Keystone STARS Designation Certificates for STAR 2, 3, and 4 have been updated to include the following information:

  • Name of the program

  • Program’s Master Provider Index (MPI) number

  • Program’s address

  • Program’s STAR level

  • Date the Keystone STARS Designation Certificate was issued

  • Date of expiration for the current Keystone STAR level designation

  • Contact information for the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL)

  • Website for additional information on Keystone STARS

All Keystone STARS Designation Certificates now reflect Meg Snead, as Acting Secretary of the Department of Human Services (DHS), and Shante’ Brown, as Acting Deputy Secretary of the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL).

Programs will receive an updated Keystone STARS Designation Certificate at the time of their next designation, full, or annual renewal. The Keystone STARS Designation Certificate will now be issued with three year expiration dates.


Pennie 2023 Open Enrollment Period

The 2023 Open Enrollment Period for Pennie — Pennsylvania’s official health and dental insurance marketplace — is happening through January 15, 2023.

About Open Enrollment

Pennie is the official health insurance marketplace in PA established under the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The exchange enables eligible individuals to purchase private health insurance coverage at federally subsidized rates.

Pennie’s plan comparison tool allows individuals to answer questions about their health status, preferred providers, and even prescription drug needs. The tool will then display coverage options with total costs for care, including premium, deductible, and total out-of-pocket costs.

Enroll by December 15, 2023 for coverage that kicks in January 1, 2023. Enrollments completed between December 15, 2022 and January 15, 2023 will begin February 1, 2023

For more information, visit


November 14, 2022

Free Lesson Plans for School-Age Programs

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


The curriculum, Best Day Ever!, is designed by teachers for teachers. These easy-to-use, standards-aligned lesson plans are available at no cost and offer a turnkey solution for school-age programs for after school hours and days when children are off from school. Whether it’s a teacher in-service, scheduled holiday, or surprise snow day, the plans help teachers fill the day with fun, easy activities that reinforce learning.

Six full-day Kids’ Day Out plans are built around high-interest themes. They include a daily schedule and lots of hands-on activities using many items teachers already have in their supply closets. Ten free after school lesson plans are also available.

The Learning Lamp will offer 16 Best Day Ever! units for FREE through December 2022.

Access the Lesson Plans

You can access the free plans on the Learning Lamp’s website. Each themed unit features high-interest topics, engaging hands-on activities, and opportunities for children to practice concepts in science, technology, engineering, art, and math (STEAM).

All lessons are aligned with PA learning standards and can be adapted to meet the needs and interests of individual students. For more information about The Learning Lamp’s Best Day Ever! Fall 2022 Free Trial, call Christy at 814-262-0732 ext. 227.


November 9, 2022

Training Recording: City of Pittsburgh Lead Safe Child Care Registry

A recording of the City of Pittsburgh Lead Safe Child Care Registry training for child care providers is now available.


Due to Pittsburgh’s new Lead Safety Law, child-occupied facilities (including active child care programs, pre-k, or Kindergarten classrooms) located in pre-1978 buildings are required to register with the Department of Permits, Licenses, and Inspections (PLI) by December 31, 2022.

PLI hosted two virtual trainings on October 25, to assist child- occupied facilities with the registration process.

View a recording of the training and/or download the presentation slides.