Green STEAM and Play Camp at Green Playces

Our Green Playces Initiative is in year two and GTECH has successfully built out two sites (Northside and Homewood) and will complete sites in McKeesport, Allentown, the Hill District, and the City of Wilkinsburg by the end of this calendar year. The original intent of this program was to partner with youth programs in areas of high vacancy to build an outdoor classroom or play space with input from youth and the community. The Green Playces Initiative started from investigating…

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Does sustainability = diversity?

GTECH is getting started with another year of evaluating and improving our internal practices through the Green Workplace Challenge! We are  joining other Pittsburgh area organizations in a collective effort to make our region a more sustainable place to live and work. This year, Sustainable Pittsburgh added a whole new focus area to these sustainable efforts: social equity. These actions focus on Diversity & Inclusion, equitable pay and benefits, and transparency.  Here at GTECH we are excited to be encouraged…

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Building Kids Dreams: From Maker Space to Play Space

GTECH’s Green Playces initiative closes the gap between the lack of environmental education and access to safe, vibrant green spaces for youth who live in close proximity to blighted, vacant land by transforming vacant lots into meaningful outdoor making and learning spaces for STEM education and eco-literacy curriculum (see Green Playces in action). We do this by transforming vacant lots in close proximity to youth facilities into kid-designed green spaces. The sites include outdoor classrooms, outdoor kitchens, or play spaces incorporating…

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Two Wheels Lots of Green Recap

Thank You! You Keep Us Rolling. Thank you to everyone who joined us on the bike tour or attended our pop-up community party at the Garden on Gearing for Two Wheels Lots of Green. THE RESULTS With your help we raised over $12,000 for our vacant land projects. We couldn’t have done it without you! Check out what riders had to say during the event. Tweets about 2wlog16

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Hilltop Green Playce Bonus: Stormwater Management

The Hilltop Green Playce is located along Warrington Ave. in Allentown's business district. Tucked between 2 buildings and below a parking lot, the lot is part asphalt and part hillside. The site receives a significant amount of stormwater runoff from the adjacent impervious surfaces in this highly urbanized watershed. Thanks to a grant received from the Allegheny County Conservation District (ACCD), we have been able to install stormwater best management practices (BMPs) in order to improve site conditions, provide educational opportunities, and…

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Kicking Off in Clairton

This fall, 12 new Ambassadors will begin the process of reclaiming a vacant space in the City of Clairton, PA. We couldn't be more excited to be working with residents and leaders in Clairton as we begin the journey of addressing issues of vacancy and blight. ReClaim Clairton, with support from the Jefferson Regional Foundation and partners like Economic Development South and the Steel Valley Council of Governments, is shaping up to be huge success already. While we officially launched…

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1839 Wylie Avenue

Our Green Playces are meant to be havens for youth and their community – spaces where kids (and adults!) can connect to their environment in meaningful ways, discovering themselves and their place in the world. That’s why we’re thrilled and honored to be working with the Hill District community on a Green Playce at 1839 Wylie Avenue. What’s at 1839 Wylie Avenue? Some might say “not much” – it’s a hilly green space behind what is now the Grayson Center.…

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Kids In Allentown Making an Impact

Our Green Playces Initiative has completed two sites to date (Northside and Homewood) and will complete four sites this calendar year (Hilltop, McKeesport, Wilkinsburg, and the Hill District).  We selected The Brashear Association’s Allentown Learning and Engagement Center as the primary partner for the Hilltop Site.  We couldn’t be more excited about this relationship and are excited to debut the site at our annual Two Wheels Lots of Green event on August 20th. Our annual bike tour will highlight projects we…

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FedEx Ground Delivers

"Fast. Reliable. FedEx Ground." That's the tagline to a recent FedEx Ground ad. It's also how their employees work and give back to the community. FedEx Ground, whose headquarters is in Moon Township, recently provided GTECH with funds to establish the FedEx Ground Impact Award, which is intended to recognize projects that exhibit significant scope, connectivity, and community engagement. This spring, Jamie Balser of South Side Slopes, a ReClaim South: Sustaining Momentum Ambassador, was awarded the fund for his beautification project…

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GTECH Office Environment

This post was written by Marquise, one of our summer interns! Stay tuned for more information about his experience and the projects he is working on. To contact Marquise, email him at interns@gtechstrategies.org with Marquise in the subject line.  It can be kind of intimidating trying to build relationships with those people you barely know. That intimidation can come from a few things like not being comfortable or not being able to adapt to your new surroundings. When I started…

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Celebrate National Pollinator Week

Did you know that June 20 - 26 is National Pollinator Week? In celebration, we'd like to share some neat facts with you and tips about how you can help support the health of pollinators. To start, here are a few fast facts that illustrate the importance of pollinators: Pollinators are a Keystone Species - meaning that many other species of animals and plants rely on them to survive. They are also an Indicator Species - meaning that their health…

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To Our Health

GTECH, as many of our readers know, stands for Growth Through Energy and Community Health.  But what is Community Health, exactly? Wait a minute.  For that matter, what is Health? It is, presumably, something we all want - for ourselves, our family, our communities, our environment, our planet (sometimes in that order, though that logic may be a bit flawed, as will be made clear shortly).  Nevertheless, what it is, exactly, is a much more complicated question. An overly simple explanation…

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