November 24, 2020

Free Tutoring Available for K-12 Students

Gwen’s Girls will continue to offer its free Academic Support Initiative virtual tutoring services for the upcoming 2020-21 school year. These services are available to any K-12 student who is attending school in Allegheny County.


Academic Support Initiative (ASI) tutoring is a free service offered to any K-12 student in the Pittsburgh area. Available tutors have a wide skill range that includes English Language Arts (ELA), Math, Science, Foreign Language, Special Education, and others. Tutoring services are offered throughout the academic year.

Gwen’s Girls offers group sessions for grades K-8 that are available Monday through Friday from 9 to 11 a.m., as well as individual sessions that are available Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tutoring services will be provided through remote live sessions.


To register for tutoring, visit the Gwen’s Girls website. Gwen’s Girls will assist families in getting the necessary equipment for success.

More Information

For questions, contact Gwen’s Girls at 412.904.4239 or

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November 17, 2020

Provide Your Feedback: Subsidized Child Care Eligibility

The Pennsylvania Department of Human Services and the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) are accepting public comments through December 14, 2020 for proposed changes to the current subsidized child care eligibility regulations.


Proposed changes to the subsidized child care eligibility regulations at 55 Pa. Code Chapter 3041 might impact families, children, and early childhood education providers. The proposed changes include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • expanded eligibility period of 12 months;
    • expanded eligibility to cover hours the parent or caretaker requires sleep following completion of overnight work shift;
    • no changes to the amounts of subsidy and co-payment for the duration of the eligibility period, unless to the family’s benefit;
    • abolished the requirement for the parent or caretaker to pay an advanced co-pay prior to enrollment;
    • children who turn 13 during the eligibility period will continue to receive the subsidy until the eligibility period ends;
    • codifying payment practices permitting tiered reimbursement for providers who voluntarily exceed the basic health and safety requirements;
    • codifying payment practices based on enrollment and not attendance, to include increasing the number of permitted absences from 25 to 50 per fiscal year;
    • after five consecutive days absent, the child maintains eligibility, but the enrollment is suspended until the child returns to care; and
    • establishment of waiver provisions and periods of presumptive eligibility for particular populations, including victims of domestic violence and families experiencing homelessness.

How To Submit A Comment

All public comments must be submitted in writing by December 14, 2020. All comments, suggestions, or objections should reference the regulation number, section, and subsection. Comments can be submitted using the following methods:

    • fax your comments to 717.214.6575; or
    • mail your comments to:Michael Ordonez
      Office of Child Development and Early Learning
      333 Market Street, 6th Floor
      Harrisburg, PA 17126

If you would like to receive a response, please include your contact information when submitting.

More Information

For information about the current regulations, visit the Pennsylvania Code website. To view the latest issue, read Volume 50 Number 46.

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October 21, 2020

Allegheny County Family Resource Map Now Available

Are you interested in accessing food, housing, parent, or employment services? Check out ELRC Region 5’s Allegheny County Family Resource Map to view resources available near you!


The Allegheny County Family Resource Map highlights the addresses, phone numbers, and websites of a variety of family supports, including:

    • Aging
    • Care and Education
    • Employment
    • Family Activities
    • Food
    • Health
    • Housing
    • New Parents
    • Outdoors and Recreation
    • Transportation

Through the map, families can find countywide resources and services closest to them, such as senior community centers, family centers, early learning programs, public schools, WIC offices, parks, libraries, food pantries, diaper banks, clinics, public housing, Port Authority bus stops, and more.

More Information

For questions or to submit a map suggestion, please contact ELRC Region 5 at 412.350.3577


July 9, 2020

Virtual Service Delivery Webinar Series

To support family-facing providers in their online work with children and families, Brazelton Touchpoints Center is offering a series of free one-hour webinars and an online learning community that will explore how to manage the challenges posed by virtual service delivery and share strategies providers have found for building and sustaining strong relationships with families virtually.


In partnership with Parents as Teachers and the Rapid Response Virtual Home Visiting (RR-VHV) Collaborative, Brazelton Touchpoints Center will build on lessons learned from virtual home visiting, adapted for all family-facing providers.

All professionals who work with families of young children—including those who work in health care, early care and education, early intervention, child welfare, and family support—are encouraged to attend these webinars. Brazelton Touchpoints Center is pairing the webinars with an online learning community where webinar participants can engage with one another and BTC facilitators on topics and strategies discussed in the webinars.

Featured Webinars

    • Engaging Families Using a Strengths-Based Approach in the Virtual World
      Wednesday, July 22 | 2 – 3 p.m. | Register
    • Partnering with Families Virtually
      Wednesday, August 5 | 2 – 3 p.m. | Register
    • Providing Staff Support and Supervision Virtually
      Wednesday, August 19 | 2 – 3 p.m. | Register
    • Developmental Screenings on Your Screen
      Wednesday, September 2 | 2 – 3 p.m. | Register
    • Challenging Conversations with Families Virtually
      Wednesday, September 16 | 2 – 3 p.m. | Register
    • Taking Care of Yourself as a Virtual Service Provider
      Wednesday, September 30 | 2 – 3 p.m. | Register


To register and learn more, visit the Brazelton Touchpoints Center website. Participants can register for the entire series or for individual webinars.

More Information

For questions, email


December 16, 2019

PDO Needs Assessment Survey: Upcoming Deadline

Early care and education professionals in southwestern Pennsylvania are being asked to take the Professional Development Organization (PDO) Needs Assessment Survey.


From now through December 31, 2019, PDOs are performing a needs assessment with early childhood professionals by region and will develop a strategic plan and timetable for each. The survey will take approximately 10 – 15 minutes. Responses will be used to finalize the work plan and timeline for the Southwest and other regions that Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania will serve. Following this period, community outreach will begin. Click here to take complete the survey.

During this transition, professionals who wish to obtain their Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential can find credit-bearing coursework through Westmoreland County Community College and Harrisburg Area Community College.


The Pennsylvania Department of Human Services’ (DHS) Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) announced the selection of its six regional PDOs in October 2019. The PDOs were created to coordinate and facilitate access to credit-bearing coursework and credentials for early care and education professionals in Pennsylvania. PDOs support direct access across each service region for the early childhood workforce to participate in continuing education through a mixed delivery model and coordinate with the Early Learning Resource Centers in improving the quality of early learning programs.

The regional PDO selection for the Southwest region is Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania. The Shippensburg PDO also supports the Central, Northeast, and Northwest regions. See the regional PDO map here.

More Information

To learn more about PDOs, read the Pennsylvania Key’s announcement.

*Information provided by OCDEL 


July 15, 2019

Cliff Effect Public Service Announcement Seeks Focus Group

Circles Greater Pittsburgh and the University of Pittsburgh’s Office of Child Development are seeking individuals who are willing to be interviewed and recorded for a Public Service Announcement that will raise awareness on the Cliff Effect. Participants selected will be compensated.


The Cliff Effect impacts individuals who are:

    • working, but still eligible for certain subsidies such as Section 8 or public housing, Child Care Assistance, Medicaid, Food Stamps, and more
    • at risk of losing benefits because of an increase in income
    • faced with choosing between a raise/increased income or receiving benefits

Available Sessions

There are two available session dates:

    • Thursday, July 18, 6 – 8 p.m.
      Carnegie Library East Liberty | 130 S. Whitfield Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15206
    • Saturday, July 20, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
      Gallery on Penn | 5937 Penn Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15206


To register for the Cliff Effect groups, complete this form.

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July 2, 2019

Free Dental Clinic: Mission of Mercy

Mission of Mercy Pittsburgh is providing free dental clinic services on a first-come, first served basis on July 26 and 27th, with doors opening at 6 a.m.


If you, a loved one, or a friend are in need of free dental care, Mission of Mercy Pittsburgh (MOMPGH) is here to help! MOMPGH provides free dental services, with a limit of one dental procedure per patient per day, on a first-come, first serve basis until capacity is reached.

The clinic doesn’t require specific eligibility or income requirements and is open to children (ages 2 to 17) and adults. If a child is present (anyone under 18), there must be a guardian available to watch the child at all times, meaning if one adult is receiving a procedure, another must be present to watch the child. Child care is not provided.

Pre-registration is not required, but it is recommended to arrive early. Participants must enter through the PPG Paints Arena Highmark Gate, located next to the Epiphany Catholic Church on Centre Avenue.

Services Provided

The free dental clinic provides:

  • cleanings,
  • fillings
  • root canal treatments on selective teeth,
  • extractions,
  • oral hygiene instruction, and
  • a limited number of temporary partial dental appliances.


Shuttle services will be provided for patients, with two routes available. The circuit for each route will on the hour, from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. The last shuttle will depart PPG Paints Arena at 6 p.m.

Route A
  • Station Square T Station
  • Carson Towers (2117 East Carson Street)
  • Hillman Library (2960 Forbes Avenue)
  • VA Pittsburgh Hospital – University Center
  • Jubilee Kitchen (2005 Wyandotte Street)
  • PPG Paints Arena (1001 Fifth Avenue)
Route B
  • Saint Stanislaus Church (57 21st Street)
  • Giant Eagle on North Side (318-320 Cedar Avenue)
  • Greyhound Station (55 11th Street)
  • Market Square
  • PPG Paints Arean (1001 Fifth Avenue)

Click here to view the map.

Learn More

To learn more about available services, what to expect, and more, visit the MOMPGH page.

For questions, email


June 3, 2019

Carnegie Library Serving Summer Meals for Children

Beginning June 17, the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh will offer free summer meals/snacks to Pittsburgh youth on weekdays through August 23.


In summer 2019, the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh will continue its participation in the Summer Food Service Program in order to ensure even more Pittsburgh youth have access to free food during summer vacation. Meals and activities will be provided during times listed below while supplies last and are for youth ages 18 and younger, and for persons with disabilities up to age 21.

Meals are being offered locally in collaboration with Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank and Pittsburgh CitiParks as part of the federally funded Summer Food Service Program.

Program Schedule

This program is available Monday – Friday at the following locations (unless otherwise specified):

More Information

For questions, contact the Library of Pittsburgh via phone at 412.622.3114.

*Information provided by the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh