Grounded in East Hills

As part of our investigative process, Grounded Strategies is exploring East Hills for further intervention. Having recently installed rain gardens in the Park Hill Drive Community, we're now working with the East Hills Consensus Group (EHCG) to help them advocate for improvements in the entire East Hills neighborhood. The main focus points for EHCG in terms of community strategy are Stormwater, Public Safety, and Community Beautification.     During our tour of the neighborhood, it became apparent just how important…

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Pitt 1st Years are Grounded in Homewood

As part of their orientation process at the start of the fall semester, first years at Pitt joined Grounded in Homewood for a day of service. We worked together on a litter cleanup, while engaging in thought provoking discussions about the ties between refuse, home abandonment, poverty, and access to green space.                 Our litter cleanup also served as a walking tour of the neighborhood, to show areas where Grounded has already built…

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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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What IS a Green Playce? …Fast Facts on this exciting program

The Green Playces Initiative is Grounded Strategies' youth-based programming and placemaking program.  Our origins  The Green Playces Initiative was formed out of research we conducted in 2014 that examined the prevalence of environmental education opportunities for youth in neighborhoods with high levels of vacancy, which yielded the Youth in Green report. Why Green Playces matter There is a growing body of evidence that tells us how important it is for youth to connect with their outdoor environment. Improvements in behavior,…

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LandCare Women Making a Difference in Hazelwood

Strengthening communities through vacant lot maintenance Have you ever wondered who maintains all of the vacant lots in Pittsburgh? With over 27,000 vacant lots in just the city alone, it takes a coordinated effort to care for this vast amount of vacant land. The City of Pittsburgh owns approximately 26% of Pittsburgh’s vacant lots and the URA owns another 5.2%, or around 1,400 vacant lots. If you haven’t really noticed a vacant lot in your community, chances are that it…

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Featured Partner: Pitt Engineers without Borders

For this month’s Featured Partner, we are highlighting a new and exciting partnership with the University of Pittsburgh’s Engineers Without Borders chapter. We could not be more excited to work with them as they contribute their engineering skills toward our fight to transform vacant and under-loved land throughout Allegheny County. For our first project together, we challenged them to design and build a water collection cistern as part of our Green Stormwater Infrastructure (GTECH GSI) project in Observatory Hill. Tucked…

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Volunteer Day with FedEx Ground

On Friday, June 2, we kicked off our second demonstration project for the GTECH Green Stormwater Infrastructure (GTECH GSI) initiative in the high-priority O-27 sewershed. The goal of the demonstration projects for GTECH GSI is to capture stormwater before it reaches our overworked combined sewer system, while also providing a welcoming green space that meets community needs. For this particular project, we are partnering with Riverview Manor, a senior living facility in the Brighton Heights neighborhood of the Northside. The…

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Welcome Shequaya & Anna

Meet Shequaya and Anna We're excited to welcome 2 great new team members to the GTECH staff. Read more about them below. Shequaya Bailey Position: Administrative Coordinator (shared with Landforce) Hometown: Pittsburgh Background: Shequaya has a Bachelors degree from from Penn State in Health Policy and Administration. She has 15 years of experience in administration, management, HR, finance, and hospitality. What led her to GTECH: She values the mission and appreciates that the work is being conducted in her hometown.…

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Trauma Informed Community Development: An Interview with Paul Abernathy, Part 2

GTECH is about to embark upon a new round of work in the Hill District, ReClaim Central.  But, as always, we aren’t going it alone. The Hill District Consensus Group brought us on board to help develop some of the vacant lots around Bedford Dwellings as part of the Choice Neighborhood planning process. Meanwhile, down the street, FOCUS Pittsburgh had been working on an intensive project to improve one block on Webster Avenue.  So, rather than pursue another effort separately,…

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Trauma Informed Community Development: An Interview with Paul Abernathy, Part 1

GTECH is about to embark upon a new round of work in the Hill District, ReClaim Central.  But, as always, we aren’t going it alone. The Hill District Consensus Group brought us on board to help develop some of the vacant lots around Bedford Dwellings as part of the Choice Neighborhood planning process. Meanwhile, down the street, FOCUS Pittsburgh had been working on an intensive project to improve one block on Webster Avenue.  So, rather than pursue another effort separately,…

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Leadership lessons #412: Let the Brilliance Flow

Organizations are a lot like watersheds - with tributaries of brilliance flowing towards a central channel of organizational knowledge and capability.  Embracing that flow - and in fact even being directed by it - seems to be the mark of successful leadership.  In my case, I have been incredibly fortunate to be at the delta of two rivers of wisdom and expertise…(I hope everyone is appreciating the rich Pittsburgh analogies) that come together to form the power and prowess of…

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Blight Bootcamp T-Shirt Raffle

  Blight is like a bad, stinking and torn t-shirt. It’s a pain to look at. It costs you in money and close social relationships, as well as attracting unwanted trouble. But, while blight takes the right knowledge, resources, attitude and ability to combat, replacing that shirt is easy! All you need to do is register now for our Blight Bootcamp Conference, taking place in Hazelwood on October 7-8th, and you will be entered into a raffle for a free…

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