Convening, Cultivating, and Celebrating Community

Convening, Cultivating, and Celebrating Community

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NWWPA in the Community: PCRG Summit and the Jefferson Forum
Welcoming Interactive + Welcoming Economies in Pittsburgh
Connellsville Youth Financial Experience
Partner Information Lunch
What's Next With NeighborWorks?

NWWPA in the Community: PCRG Summit and the Jefferson Forum

Left to right: Craig Burkley, Alan Sisco, Evan Zuverink, Pat Clark

On May 8th and 9th, NWWPA staff and board members spent two days learning and networking at PCRG's 9th Annual Community Development Summit. This year’s summit, held at the Omni William Penn Hotel, featured engaging plenary speakers and hosted more than 20 breakout sessions. NWWPA Chief Operating & Financial Officer Craig Burkley participated in a roundtable, Sustaining Homeownership for the Long Haul, which also included Alan Sisco of Rebuilding Together Pittsburgh, Evan Zuverink of First Commonwealth Bank, and NWWPA Board Member Pat Clark of Jackson/Clark Partners. The session -- a continuation of a roundtable conversation held during the Pittsburgh NeighborWorks Training Institute -- explored tools and resources for homeownership preservation and promotion among those who incomes exceed 80% of Area Median Income (the threshold for which most housing assistance programs). Other session topics included Community Land Trusts, Opportunity Zones, and Building Inclusive Development. NWWPA’s PULSE Fellow Olivia Dale said that “It was amazing to see familiar faces and names come together to engage in productive discussions about how to fix the issues we all see in our communities.”

NWWPA Team Members at the Jefferson Forum

Mayor James Nowalk, Mary Phan-Gruber, and Tim Hindes
On May 8th, NWWPA Homebuyer & Financial Coach Tammy Grzelka and Public Ally Haleigh Schidhamer attended the Jefferson Regional Foundation's 5th Annual Jefferson Forum: Recognizing & Inspiring Resilience. 275 attendees from 150 organization in the South Hills and Mon Valley gathered to listen, learn, and share ideas. The forum opened with a dialogue with NWWPA Marketing Consultant Tim Hindes, originator of the Stronger than Hate logo and Principal of TrailBlaze Creative, and Whitehall Mayor James Nowalk about what it means to be "stronger than hate." Haleigh Schmidhamer said, “It was inspiring and enlightening to see and understand the kinds of problems people face in the areas we serve.” The Forum covered topics including trauma informed care, change management, cultural humility, literacy, and health education. We are honored to partner with the Jefferson Regional Foundation and many of the organizations represented at the Forum to provide financial wellness services to South Hills residents, with targeted outreach to the immigrant community.

Welcoming Interactive + Welcoming Economies in Pittsburgh

The Welcoming Economies (WE) Global Network is a regional Network of immigrant economic development organizations working in cities and regions across the Midwest. Since 2013, the WE Global Network has hosted an annual convening focused on building bridges between newcomers and long-time residents. This year, Pittsburgh hosted the Welcoming Interactive + Welcoming Economies Convening (WIE) with the help of local partner All for All. The goal of the convening is to help organizations deepen their work to embrace immigrants and create opportunities for all. Our CEO Colin Kelly was invited to the Welcoming Economies Convening in Syracuse in 2017 as a part of a delegation of Pittsburgh leaders from the nonprofit and government sectors. This year, Colin was thrilled to be able to serve on the Leadership Committee for the Pittsburgh Convening. Colin says that “The WIE Convening is more than just another conference. It is the real-time representation of the great places that communities, cities, and countries can become when EVERYONE is welcome.”

The Convening featured over 30 breakout sessions that covered topics like Economic Development, Government Leadership, Equitable Access, Civic Engagement, and Connected Communities & Social Cohesion. NWWPA Program Manager, Beci Russell, said that "
It was privilege to attend sessions during the WIE Convening to help strengthen my understanding of immigrant and refugee populations and the best ways to engage and serve them. We need to be constantly striving to do and be better for all residents of the communities we serve which means continuous learning."

Connellsville Youth Financial Experience

NeighborWorks Western Pennsylvania's Youth Financial Experiences offer area teens the opportunity to practice real world financial decision making through an interactive simulation. On May 15th, we brought the event to Connellsville Area High School, with more than 100 students participating. After an introduction to financial concepts, each student was assigned a monthly income and given a series of real-life scenarios. They then visited different "vendors" to pay rent, pay utility bills, buy groceries, and make financial decisions based on their circumstances and individual preferences. At the end of the activity, students reconvene to discuss whether they still had money left over or not, what some of the surprise expenses were, and what problem-solving methods they used. 

Said NWWPA Education Specialist Jarid Shipley, “I love getting to interact with the students, talk about their experiences, and hear them have those ‘ah-ha’ moments about how much utilities cost or how a speeding ticket can derail your budget for the month. I am always impressed with how engaged they get and how afterwards they are talking about what they would do differently next time. Then they realize that next time is for real.” 

Education Specialist Anne Schwan agreed, adding "I liked seeing their problem-solving skills play out, like when some students decided to buy a home together. For the students that had a surplus in their budget at the end, when asked what they would do with it, many students said 'Save it!,' which was great to hear!”

Partner Information Lunch

NeighborWorks Western Pennsylvania has been helping first-time homebuyers navigate the purchase process for more than 50 years. 

We partner with realtors, appraisers, home inspectors, and insurance agents in the instruction of regular Homebuyer Workshops. It’s a great way to connect directly with prospective homebuyers! 

We want to help housing professionals succeed in business and help our customers by connecting them with trustworthy, trained real estate professionals. On June 18th, join us for lunch and learn how you can connect with your target market by presenting at an upcoming workshop. Space is limited, so be sure to RSVP using the link below. For questions, call (412) 281.9773.


What's Next With NeighborWorks?
Homebuyer Workshop Sponsored by First National Bank

West Middlesex Youth Financial Experience

Home Matters to PA Day 

NeighborWorks Week

Financial Wellness Workshop at East End Cooperative Ministries

Young Professional Financial Wellness Workshop with Compass AmeriCorps

Homebuyer Workshop Sponsored by PNC Bank

Learn and Earn Workshop at Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation

Partner Information Lunch

Young Professional Financial Wellness Workshop at Sewickley Library

Lunch & Learn with UPMC Mercy

World Refugee Day

Financial Wellness Workshop with East End Cooperative Ministry

Financial Wellness Workshop

Homebuyer Workshop Sponsored by First National Bank


June 3

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June 3-7

June 11

June 14

June 15

June 17

June 18

June 18

June 19

June 21

June 25

June 26
June 29

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