News

June 18, 2019

Allegheny County Children’s Fund Community Meeting

Spanish-speaking community members are invited to join the Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group on June 18 at the YWCA Building in Downtown Pittsburgh to share their views on what works best and what additional support is needed when it comes to early learning and out-of-school time.

About

Allegheny County’s goal is to make sure that every child can benefit from quality early learning and out-of-school time. A series of six Community Meetings are being held across the County to learn from families, caregivers, and educators what access to quality early learning and out-of-school time looks like today—from your perspective and in your community.

Each meeting will include child care, refreshments, and opportunities for community members to voice their input on how Allegheny County can be a leader for kids moving forward.

Community Meeting Dates

The Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group and community members will convene on the following dates:

    • City Meeting – May 30 | 6:30 p.m. | Jeron X Grayson Center, Hill District
    • West Meeting – June 3 | 6:30 p.m. | The Landing Community Center, Moon Township
    • South Meeting – June 4 | 6:30 p.m. | Bethel Park Community Center
    • North Meeting – June 5 | 6:00 p.m. | Shaler North Hills Library
    • East Meeting – June 12 | 6:30 p.m. | Founders Hall Middle School, McKeesport
    • Spanish-Language Meeting – June 18 | 6:30 p.m. | YWCA Building, Downtown Pittsburgh

Registration & Questions

Visit the Community Meeting website to learn more, RSVP, or contact event organizers.

News

June 12, 2019

Allegheny County Children’s Fund Community Meeting

Join the Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group on June 12 at Founders Hall Middle School in McKeesport to share your views on what works best and what additional support is needed when it comes to early learning and out-of-school time.

About

Allegheny County’s goal is to make sure that every child can benefit from quality early learning and out-of-school time. A series of six Community Meetings are being held across the County to learn from families, caregivers, and educators what access to quality early learning and out-of-school time looks like today—from your perspective and in your community.

Each meeting will include child care, refreshments, and opportunities for community members to voice their input on how Allegheny County can be a leader for kids moving forward.

Community Meeting Dates

The Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group and community members will convene on the following dates:

    • City Meeting – May 30 | 6:30 p.m. | Jeron X Grayson Center, Hill District
    • West Meeting – June 3 | 6:30 p.m. | The Landing Community Center, Moon Township
    • South Meeting – June 4 | 6:30 p.m. | Bethel Park Community Center
    • North Meeting – June 5 | 6:00 p.m. | Shaler North Hills Library
    • East Meeting – June 12 | 6:30 p.m. | Founders Hall Middle School, McKeesport
    • Spanish-Language Meeting – June 18 | 6:30 p.m. | YWCA Building, Downtown Pittsburgh

Registration & Questions

Visit the Community Meeting website to learn more, RSVP, or contact event organizers.

News

June 5, 2019

Allegheny County Children’s Fund Community Meeting

Join the Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group on June 5 at the Shaler North Hills Library to share your views on what works best and what additional support is needed when it comes to early learning and out-of-school time.

About

Allegheny County’s goal is to make sure that every child can benefit from quality early learning and out-of-school time. A series of six Community Meetings are being held across the County to learn from families, caregivers, and educators what access to quality early learning and out-of-school time looks like today—from your perspective and in your community.

Each meeting will include child care, refreshments, and opportunities for community members to voice their input on how Allegheny County can be a leader for kids moving forward.

Community Meeting Dates

The Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group and community members will convene on the following dates:

    • City Meeting – May 30 | 6:30 p.m. | Jeron X Grayson Center, Hill District
    • West Meeting – June 3 | 6:30 p.m. | The Landing Community Center, Moon Township
    • South Meeting – June 4 | 6:30 p.m. | Bethel Park Community Center
    • North Meeting – June 5 | 6:00 p.m. | Shaler North Hills Library
    • East Meeting – June 12 | 6:30 p.m. | Founders Hall Middle School, McKeesport
    • Spanish-Language Meeting – June 18 | 6:30 p.m. | YWCA Building, Downtown Pittsburgh

Registration & Questions

Visit the Community Meeting website to learn more, RSVP, or contact event organizers.

News

June 4, 2019

Allegheny County Children’s Fund Community Meeting

Join the Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group on June 4 at the Bethel Park Community Center to share your views on what works best and what additional support is needed when it comes to early learning and out-of-school time.

About

Allegheny County’s goal is to make sure that every child can benefit from quality early learning and out-of-school time. A series of six Community Meetings are being held across the County to learn from families, caregivers, and educators what access to quality early learning and out-of-school time looks like today—from your perspective and in your community.

Each meeting will include child care, refreshments, and opportunities for community members to voice their input on how Allegheny County can be a leader for kids moving forward.

Community Meeting Dates

The Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group and community members will convene on the following dates:

    • City Meeting – May 30 | 6:30 p.m. | Jeron X Grayson Center, Hill District
    • West Meeting – June 3 | 6:30 p.m. | The Landing Community Center, Moon Township
    • South Meeting – June 4 | 6:30 p.m. | Bethel Park Community Center
    • North Meeting – June 5 | 6:00 p.m. | Shaler North Hills Library
    • East Meeting – June 12 | 6:30 p.m. | Founders Hall Middle School, McKeesport
    • Spanish-Language Meeting – June 18 | 6:30 p.m. | YWCA Building, Downtown Pittsburgh

Registration & Questions

Visit the Community Meeting website to learn more, RSVP, or contact event organizers.

News

June 3, 2019

Allegheny County Children’s Fund Community Meeting

Join the Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group on June 3 at The Landing Community Center in Moon Township to share your views on what works best and what additional support is needed when it comes to early learning and out-of-school time.

About

Allegheny County’s goal is to make sure that every child can benefit from quality early learning and out-of-school time. A series of six Community Meetings are being held across the County to learn from families, caregivers, and educators what access to quality early learning and out-of-school time looks like today—from your perspective and in your community.

Each meeting will include child care, refreshments, and opportunities for community members to voice their input on how Allegheny County can be a leader for kids moving forward.

Community Meeting Dates

The Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group and community members will convene on the following dates:

    • City Meeting – May 30 | 6:30 p.m. | Jeron X Grayson Center, Hill District
    • West Meeting – June 3 | 6:30 p.m. | The Landing Community Center, Moon Township
    • South Meeting – June 4 | 6:30 p.m. | Bethel Park Community Center
    • North Meeting – June 5 | 6:00 p.m. | Shaler North Hills Library
    • East Meeting – June 12 | 6:30 p.m. | Founders Hall Middle School, McKeesport
    • Spanish-Language Meeting – June 18 | 6:30 p.m. | YWCA Building, Downtown Pittsburgh

Registration & Questions

Visit the Community Meeting website to learn more, RSVP, or contact event organizers.

News

May 30, 2019

Allegheny County Children’s Fund Community Meeting

Join the Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group on May 30 at the Jeron X Grayson Community Center in the Hill District to share your views on what works best and what additional support is needed when it comes to early learning and out-of-school time.

About

Allegheny County’s goal is to make sure that every child can benefit from quality early learning and out-of-school time. A series of six Community Meetings are being held across the County to learn from families, caregivers, and educators what access to quality early learning and out-of-school time looks like today—from your perspective and in your community.

Each meeting will include child care, refreshments, and opportunities for community members to voice their input on how Allegheny County can be a leader for kids moving forward.

Community Meeting Dates

The Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group and community members will convene on the following dates:

    • City Meeting – May 30 | 6:30 p.m. | Jeron X Grayson Center, Hill District
    • West Meeting – June 3 | 6:30 p.m. | The Landing Community Center, Moon Township
    • South Meeting – June 4 | 6:30 p.m. | Bethel Park Community Center
    • North Meeting – June 5 | 6:00 p.m. | Shaler North Hills Library
    • East Meeting – June 12 | 6:30 p.m. | Founders Hall Middle School, McKeesport
    • Spanish-Language Meeting – June 18 | 6:30 p.m. | YWCA Building, Downtown Pittsburgh

Registration & Questions

Visit the Community Meeting website to learn more, RSVP, or contact event organizers.

News

May 20, 2019

Children’s Fund Working Group Community Meetings

Join the Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group this spring for a series of community meetings to share your views on what works best and what additional support is needed when it comes to early learning and out-of-school time.

About

Allegheny County’s goal is to make sure that every child can benefit from quality early learning and out-of-school time. A series of six Community Meetings are being held across the County to learn from families, caregivers, and educators what access to quality early learning and out-of-school time looks like today—from your perspective and in your community.

Each meeting will include child care, refreshments, and opportunities for community members to voice their input on how Allegheny County can be a leader for kids moving forward.

Community Meeting Dates

The Allegheny County Children’s Fund Working Group and community members will convene on the following dates:

    • City Meeting – May 30 | 6:30 p.m. | Jeron X Grayson Community Center, Hill District
    • West Meeting – June 3 | 6:30 p.m. | The Landing Community Center, Moon Township
    • South Meeting – June 4 | 6:30 p.m. | Bethel Park Community Center
    • North Meeting – June 5 | 6:00 p.m. | Shaler North Hills Library
    • East Meeting – June 12 | 6:30 p.m. | Founders Hall Middle School, McKeesport
    • Spanish-Language Meeting – June 18 | 6:30 p.m. | YWCA Building, Downtown Pittsburgh

Registration & Questions

Visit the Community Meeting website to learn more, RSVP, or contact event organizers.

News

May 16, 2019

Pittsburgh Apraxia Specialists Panel

Join Apraxia Kids on May 16 for their Pittsburgh Apraxia Specialists Panel. Attendees will join local speech-language pathologists (SLPs) for a one-of-a-kind panel and Q&A session, visit the Apraxia Kids headquarters, and network with local families, caregivers, and therapists.

About

Apraxia Kids is the leading nonprofit that strengthens the support systems in the lives of children with apraxia of speech by educating professionals and families; facilitating community engagement and outreach; and investing in the future through advocacy and research.

This event coincides with Apraxia Awareness Month, an important time for informing the local community of the struggles that children with apraxia face each day. Apraxia Kids hopes to bring the Pittsburgh community together to raise awareness, support each other, and build a bridge between parents and professionals!

Speakers

  •  Megan Overby, Ph.D., CCC-SLP – Duquesne University
  • Kathy Helfrich-Miller, Ph.D., CCC-SLP- Rehabilitation Specialists
  • Jen Rakers, MSLP, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert. AVEd. – UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh
  • Carrie Van Soest, MS, CCC-SLP – UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh
  • Eileen Cirelli, MS, CCC/L-SLP – Allegheny Intermediate Unit
  • Gretchen Myers, MSLP-CCC; Recognized by Apraxia Kids for Advanced Training and Expertise in Childhood Apraxia of Speech – Center4Speech
  • Katie Micco, MS, CCC-SLP; Recognized by Apraxia Kids for Advanced Training and Expertise in Childhood Apraxia of Speech – Duquesne University

Registration

Registration for this event is free and may be accessed via the event’s webpage.

News

December 5, 2018

What’s Next for the Allegheny County Children’s Fund?

Although the outcome of “Our Kids. Our Commitment.” initiative was not what proponents wanted, key stakeholders are looking toward the future and finding some victory in the vote.

Voting Results

During the recent election, over 513,000 Allegheny County residents cast their vote on a proposed amendment to establish the Allegheny County Children’s Fund through an increase in property taxes (0.25 millage rate, an estimated $30 increase per year for the average household). The fund would have supported early learning opportunities for children, after-school programs and nutritious meals. The amendment was defeated, with 48.31 percent of voters in support and 51.69 percent against.

“What I heard from my constituents was that they liked the idea of increased and specific funding for early learning, after-school programming, and nutrition programs,” says Councilwoman Deb Gross. “But they had concerns about the governance of the fund.”

What Does This Mean?

The defeat means that Allegheny County still does not dedicate any funding to early learning programs and nutritious meals but does allocate approximately $8 million to after-school programs. Advocates of the Children’s Fund say, despite the vote’s outcome, the need for these programs is still there, and that the vote showed that there is great public interest in finding a solution to funding these programs for our children.

“What this tells us is that just over a half-million people in Allegheny County care about this issue,” says Patrick Dowd, executive director of Allies for Children. “There is wide consensus that these types of programs are something we should be supporting, and clearly a number of people care about this issue. That part to us is helpful and inspiring.”

James Doyle, executive director of Higher Achievement, Pittsburgh, appreciates the number of people who did vote yes. “The people are saying they care about these three critical things enough to support a small increase in their taxes,” he says. “That sends a strong message for us to continue our work.”

Advocates agree that the vote shows people care about this issue and people want to see some sort of funding be provided for this type of early childhood support.

What’s Next?

The 10 organizations that came together to form the Allegheny County Children’s Fund Initiative will continue to advocate for these programs in the day-to-day work of their organizations.  The path to move forward, Dowd says, is through continued conversations with supporters, as well as listening very carefully to those who weren’t supportive.

The group plans to create a space for people to re-engage as they sift through many ideas and other feedback they received.  A future source of funding will need to have a transparent means of reporting back to the public, they say, but the source of that funding remains to be seen.

Allegheny Children’s Fund supporters will continue to advocate for these initiatives in the day-to-day work of their organizations, as well as through their continued collaboration to create a source of funding that will support these programs in the long-term.

“Our organization’s mission has been and will continue to be one that focuses on advocating on behalf of the needs and rights of children,” says Cara Ciminillo, executive director of Trying Together. “The needs remain and the needs are great.”

“I am hopeful that the state will continue the pattern of the past few years with incremental increases to funding for these programs, but this has not been enough to fill the gap,” she says. “We will be continuing the effort to look for local revenue to help support some of that gap.”

*Information provided by Kidsburgh*

News

November 20, 2018

KaBOOM! Announces Let’s Play Everywhere Challenge Winners

KaBOOM! recently announced the winners of the Let’s Play Everywhere Challenge. As part of the Challenge, 10 grantees in Allegheny County were selected to receive a combined total of $200,000 in prize funds. Trying Together is pleased to announce that the Playful Pittsburgh Collaborative was awarded one of these grants for The Neighborhood Play Stop Project. Learn more about it and the other grantees below.

 

Challenge Winners

The Let’s Play Everywhere Challenge selected nine organizations as winners, with a total of ten ideas:

  1. Trying Together (Playful Pittsburgh Collaborative)
    • The Neighborhood Play Stop Project
  2. Glassport Community Outreach, Inc.
    • Families Will Go Gaga to Play GaGa
  3. Pittsburgh Fulton PTO
    • From Pittsburgh to Paris and Beyond!
  4. Garfield Jubilee Association, Inc.
    • James Sensory Park
  5. Grounded Strategies
    • MACS Discovery Walk
    • Race Me! Pitcairn Green Playce
  6. Community Forge
    • Number Mountain
  7. Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
    • Ping Pong in the Plaza
  8. UniversalWit
    • Play! to End Blight
  9. Focus on Renewal
    • POW! (Place of Wonder)

The Neighborhood Play Stop Project

The Neighborhood Play Stop Project will reimagine existing spaces within Hazelwood by using play stops to encourage community engagement and playful interaction. These play stops may be featured in public spaces near businesses and civic locations such as grocery stores, green spaces,  fire stations, and more. Conversations are underway to identify the finalized play stop locations.

Impact

By placing play stops in spaces that are not typically associated with play, this project will prompt community members of all ages to rethink their daily routines. For children, it’s an opportunity for imaginative play. For adults, it may be a space where they can take a mental break and play chess or engage in a calming playful activity. Similar to the Little Free Library movement, these play stops will be stewarded by various entities (the businesses where they are located, Playful Pittsburgh Collaborative member organizations, interested community members, etc.).

A Closer Look

Each stop will be based upon the common concept of play and will have playful interactive parts that relate to the location and the party stewarding the installation. For example, a stop outside a grocery store may include play items such as plastic fruits and vegetables to “purchase,” paper and pencils to create grocery lists, and laminated sheets of information about grocery store products.  However, if a stop is located outside of a fire department, their play items may include play items such as firefighter helmets, a mini fire drill tower, and fire safety facts.

Each stop will include a chalkboard with permanently affixed prompts for participants to write their thoughts. Prompts may include statement starters such as “When I play outside I like to…” or “At the grocery store I can find these colors…”

About the Challenge

The Let’s Play Everywhere Challenge is a design competition that took place in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania—presented by Keurig Dr. Pepper and KaBOOM!—to develop innovative ideas for making play easy and available for kids and families. This challenge is about creating opportunities for free, unstructured, unplanned play to ensure that all kids, no matter where they come from or where they live, get the active play they need to thrive.

Learn More

To learn more about the challenge winners and their ideas, read KaBOOM’s post.