See You Later!

I’ve been putting off writing this blog post because I’m sort of in denial that my time here at Grounded has come to an end. I started here last year at the very beginning of my grad program in Social Work and Public Administration at Pitt (seriously, I started before orientation because I just couldn’t wait). I really was not sure what I was getting myself into, but thought it would be fun. A year later and it has turned…

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Grandma Bev’s Green Zone Party

Joining the Grounded network last September as a CommunityCare steward Beverly Howell, also known as Grandma Bev, showed her commitment to the Homewood neighborhood and to keeping it clean and green. Prior to joining the CommunityCare program, Bev has been a long-time active resident of Homewood, and even acquired the vacant lot next to her home through the City's Adopt-a-Lot lease program. Beverly envisioned this space next to her home to be a safe haven for the children of Homewood…

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Grounded’s Guide to Getting Kids Outside this Summer!

July 6th: Summer Carnival + Bantam Night - Join us at our 2nd Annual Summer Carnival and Bantam Night at the Wiggle Whiskey Barrel House and Whiskey Garden. This event is for the whole family! Play carnival games, listen to live music, and enjoy food from Gaucho's food truck.   Check out one of our many Green Playces! Green Playces are hives of education, innovation, creativity, science and, most importantly, play. Grounded has partnered with organizations and schools throughout Allegheny County…

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Ambassador Highlight – Natalie Thomas

Natalie Thomas joined the Grounded network as a ReClaim South Ambassador in the 2013-2014 year and was involved again in the ReClaim South 2.0 Sustaining Momentum program in 2015-2016. Through the Ambassador program, Ms. Natalie created a community garden on a vacant lot in Beltzhoover to share with the community and engage children living in Beltzhoover. Recently, the Grounded staff visited Natalie's site for a workday to spruce it up and get it ready for the summer. The entire staff,…

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Commodification of Kindness

We recently came across a BBC News video that shares the story of a UK-based concept of digital currency created in the city of Hull. The digital currency rewards people for doing good, or for doing volunteer work in their community. The rewards are non-monetary payments that allow volunteers to shop at participating stores and businesses for a discounted price. People who volunteer don’t usually get rewarded in this way. The creator of this digital currency in Hull calls this a commodification…

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Investing in People

Engaging community members in our programs is essential to Grounded Strategies.  Doing so gives residents of communities across Allegheny County an active hand in addressing vacant land challenges and improving their neighborhood. Grounded provides training, equips residents, and gives them tools to transform community greenspace into thriving spaces for everyone to enjoy. This improves the residents' sense of pride in their communities and in the work that they have accomplished. It would be simple for nonprofit organizations to recruit volunteers from…

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Say Hello to the CommunityCare Stewards!

Meet the residents stewarding community greenspace through GTECH's new pilot program, CommunityCare. Our CommunityCare Pilot Program started in September and is now in full swing! GTECH is working closely with 11 CommunityCare Stewards that are maintaining and improving vacant land in the Homewood community. Our stewards are proud Homewood residents and passionate community members! They will dedicate 3 to 10 hours per month from now until May 2018 maintaining green and open spaces. In return, the stewards receive incentives of their…

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Welcome Miranda!

Hello! My name is Miranda Micire. I am thrilled to start my internship here with GTECH through the University of Pittsburgh’s Master’s of Social Work program. I am starting my first year in the Community Organizing and Social Action (COSA) program and will also be pursuing a joint degree in Public Administration through GSPIA. I am a Pittsburgh native that moved to Dayton, Ohio to attend the University of Dayton for my undergraduate degree. During my time in Dayton, I…

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