8 May

For the Seventh Annual Community Development Summit, our Summit Steering Committee made sure the sessions selected were stronger and more compelling than any previous year. In the past, attendees have told us that they want to hear more about what’s happening in other regions. This year, we’re having sessions from the Greater Pittsburgh Region and beyond, with presenters from Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, Chicago, and Georgia, as well as all over Pennsylvania.

“Collaboration – The New Competition” will highlight the power of partnership, telling the story of the McKees Rocks Community Resource Center, an innovative model for centralizing health and human services organizations, and shares the lessons learned by Family Services of Western Pennsylvania’s as they have implemented the Ways-To-Work program with both for-profit and non-profit partners.

“The Impact of Funding Housing Rehabilitation in Fairmont, WV” will relate best practices of funding affordable housing projects from the perspective of decision-makers with the story of West Virginia practitioners who have successfully built affordable housing in a number of communities across their state.

FMHA office

Image Courtesy of Fairmont-Morgantown Housing Authority

Past Summit attendees have also told us that they are tired of sitting silently and listening to research and outcomes reports. For 2017, we worked hard to present interactive sessions that will achieve real outcomes. The session “Overcoming Persistent Neighborhood Challenges in Pittsburgh” has been developed over the past few months in collaboration with government officials and community activists from across the City of Pittsburgh. Three working groups on the zoning code, enforcement, and procedures being used by the City have met to develop new ideas. The session will hear input to develop real recommendations that will be delivered to the City after the Summit.

Finally, attendees told us to make sure to feature sessions that are practical in a variety of funding environments. “Activating Citizen Philanthropy for Healthy Neighborhoods” features crowd-funding professionals who will be able to give advice on accessing funding from local communities. “Fewer Meetings, More Action – Community Outreach Through Tangible Projects” presents case studies from Pittsburgh groups that have implemented tactical urbanism on a local scale. And the session “Fight Blight Using the Pennsylvania Conservatorship Act” will present a new tool to combat blight, with case studies of how it’s already being used in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia.

ioby pittsburgh

Image Courtesy of ioby Pittsburgh

In all the sessions, attendees will hear from presenters who share both practical knowledge and research, incorporating their experiences in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors. Attendees will be able to bring home concrete action steps that will equip them to tackle the year ahead. Learn more about our sessions on our conference website here: http://www.pcrg.org/conference/2017-sessions/.  You can register for the Summit at our conference website before May 17th: https://pcrgsummit.eventbrite.com. Registration is also available onsite, for an increased rate of $225.

Sarah Slater

Program Coordinator, Land Use at Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group
Having grown up in the Pittsburgh area, Sarah left to study Business Administration and International Development at Houghton College, located in rural Western NY. She is thrilled to be back in the City and is eager to work with PCRG members to foster the growth of the region. Sarah is a passionate cook and loves exploring the multitude of ethnic grocery stores and farmers' markets that Pittsburgh has to offer.

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