226 South Maple Avenue Greensburg, PA 15601
5th Annual Day of Learning
Christmas for Kids Poker Run
Now enrolling participants for the
upcoming Mothers Making More (M3) 8-week Economic Stability
Class. Call 724-837-6339 ext. 32.
Substance Abuse Helpline Now Available
Westmoreland Community Action announces that the county’s first helpline dedicated solely to drug and alcohol issues is now available. Those with substance abuse questions or concerns can call toll-free 1-844-897-8927 from 7:00 pm to 2:00 am, seven days a week, 365 days a year for treatment referrals and/or general information on resources.
The Helpline is a function of the Drug Overdose Task Force, which launched in 2013, as a community-based multi-year project whose mission is to dramatically reduce the number of overdose deaths in our community. In 2015, there were 126 confirmed overdose deaths in Westmoreland County; this dramatically surpassed 2014’s rate of 87. To date, in 2016, there are 22 confirmed overdose deaths, with another 16 pending an investigation.
M3 Participants Receive Honor
Mothers Making More (M3) participants, Yvonne Hall and Victoria Murrell, were inducted into the National Honor Society, Phi Theta Kappa. The standards for this achievement require at least 12 credits a semester and a 3.5 GPA. Both students are pursuing Associate's degrees in Human Resources at WCCC. Congratulations to these ladies for their hard work and dedication in achieving this high academic honor.
Anna Joyner, 2016 WCA Self-Sufficiency Award Winner
Anna Joyner graduated from high school in the top 5% of her class. She was admitted into the Physician’s Assistant fast track program at Seton Hill University and started in the fall of 2007. By the fall of 2010 Anna had taken full advantage of the freedom and independence of college and decided to take a leave of absence. It was then that her life began on a downhill spiral and she was hanging out with a crowd that was far from her upbringing.
Anna began to turn her life around after the birth of her son, Isaiah. She started online courses at the local community college in the fall of 2012. Nearing the end of her academic career and approaching graduation, with the encouragement of her professor, Anna attended an informative interview with Tay Waltenbaugh, Chief Executive Officer of Westmoreland Community Action, in the fall of 2013. Initially, she went in to gain an understanding of the agency’s potential employment opportunities but walked out with information on some programs that could potentially help her, including the Mothers Making More (M3) program and Next Steps Supportive Housing. Fast forward to March of 2015, when Anna received an unexpected message from Tim Phillips, Westmoreland Community Action’s Director of the Westmoreland County Drug Overdose Taskforce, about a job opportunity that she may be interested in. After contacting Tay, she applied and interviewed in April of 2015 with the understanding it was a temporary, substitute position. Much to her delight, she was hired. But by May of 2015 this opportunity turned into an even better one and Anna became a permanent employee of Westmoreland Community Action’s Head Start Program. Anna and Isaiah's father, John, were married in July of 2015 and in August they moved into a new rent to own home, none of which would have been possible if it wasn’t for Westmoreland Community Action.
Anna proudly accepted her award as Isaiah and her father cheered her on. As quoted by Anna, “If it wasn’t for the faith that Tay, Tim, and my supervisor, Lori Brooks, had in me there is no way I would be where I am today. Through my employment with Westmoreland Community Action, my family has health insurance, a steady income, and a forever home for my son and step-children. I feel like we have overcome and accomplished more than I could ever fathom. To think of where I, and we, have been as a family to where we are now is like night and day. I love my job and those I work with and I am blessed and fortunate that although my past is not the best, they looked past that and gave me the opportunity to excel and give back to my community. They gave me a second chance at life and for that I am forever grateful.”
Rep. Mike Reese Visits Head Start
The following photo was taken at a recent read aloud at our Donegal Head Start center with State Representative Mike Reese. One child wanted to dress up like Rep. Reese. The other children showed him around the classroom. They were really excited to share their flower shop with him as well!
Tay Waltenbaugh -- Comcast Newsmakers Interview
Check out Tay's latest Comcast Newsmakers interview where he talks to Tonia Caruso about the drug epidemic and what's being done to reduce the number of overdose deaths in Westmoreland County.
WCA Partners with the American Red Cross to Save Lives
show that working smoke alarms save lives and reduce injuries
and property damage due to home fires. The American Red Cross
has launched a nationwide campaign to reduce the number of
deaths, injuries and damage due to home fires by 25 percent in
the next five years.
Westmoreland County Emergency Cold Weather Shelter Now Open
Westmoreland County opens its first cold weather shelter, giving
community members without reliable shelter or heat a place to
turn as temperatures dip into the 'teens. Open on nights 25
degrees or colder, the shelter will operate from 8 pm to 8 am at
the Welcome Home Shelter in Greensburg, which will house women
and children, and the Union Mission in Latrobe, which will
provide for men and up to two families. During
their stay, guests will have access to shelter and food. They
can also receive referrals to additional services, depending on
FREE E-books for Every Family!
No catch! Absolutely FREE! Spread the word to families you know. These books can be read on any device. Visit RIF.org/50eBooks
Red Ribbon Celebration
Westmoreland Community Action is proud to take part in The Red Ribbon Campaign, the oldest and largest drug prevention program in the nation. Each year the campaign reaches millions of young people during Red Ribbon Week, October 23-October 31. This year's theme was Respect Yourself...Be Drug Free.
The National Family Partnership organized the first Nationwide Red Ribbon Campaign. Since its beginning in 1985, the Red Ribbon has touched the lives of millions of people around t...he world. In response to the murder of DEA Agent Enrique Camarena, angered parents and youth in communities across the country began wearing Red Ribbons as a symbol of their commitment to raise awareness of the killing and destruction cause by drugs in America. Today, the Red Ribbon serves as a catalyst to mobilize communities to educate youth and encourage participation in drug prevention activities. Since that time, the campaign has reached millions of U.S. children and families.
Picture: (Left) Children at the Derry Hope in Life program celebrate Red Ribbon Week with a pledge to be drug free. (Right) The Westmoreland County Commissioners presented WCA's Community Prevention Services with a proclamation for Red Ribbon Week. Pictured left to right: Commissioner Tyler Courtney; Tim Phillips, Community Prevention; Comissioner Chuck Anderson and Comissioner Ted Kopas.
WCA Celebrates 35 Years
Westmoreland Community Action celebrated 35 years with a
luncheon on Wednesday, October 21 at the Ramada in Greensburg.
September was National Recovery Month
There was an awesome turnout for the National Recovery Month recognition held on September 18. Tony Marcocci, county detective and Tim Phillips, of WCA's Community Prevention took a minute to pose with Scott Caraboolad, motorcycle stunt rider and founder of Ride 4 Life.
There are some truly remarkable people in recovery right now and many more that have success stories to share about their fight against addiction. One such story comes from our own Tim Phillips, Director of Community Prevention Services. His story will inspire you and give hope to those who are facing this difficult life journey.
Tim was recently interviewed by Dr. Keri Kulik, assistant professor in the Dept. of Health and Physical Education at IUP. Click on the link below to hear Tim's courageous story.
Senior Care Center Donates School Items
The residents of the Greensburg Senior Care Center had a back to school collection for the WCA Head Start program. They collected four bags of items that will be used in our centers.
Pictured from left to right in the front row are Fred Brown,
President of the Residents Council; Eric Topper, Vice President;
and Dorothy Hunter, Secretary.
Pictured from left to right in the back row are Pam
Ghrist, Director of Social Services; Sue Fox, Community Liaison;
and Karen Hayden, Head Start staff.
The Mothers Making More (M3) program recently had a group of ladies complete the Student Success course this summer to prepare for their enrollment in college. M3 assists single mothers with barriers that may prevent them from furthering their education and earning family sustaining wages. The program is open to single mothers that work at least 20 hours per week and have an income less than $25,000. For more information, contact Melanie Firestone at 724.787.8243.
Attention Mental Health Professionals
Are you ready for a challenge? Join our fast-paced crisis
facility located in the Greensburg area. This is an excellent
career opportunity for mental health professionals desiring a
flexible work schedule, positive work environment, and
opportunity for advancement.
New Office Hours
Westmoreland Community Action's main office hours are 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Need a Car to Get to Work?
Check out the PA Ways to Work community partnership program. Reliable transportation is esential for working individuals and families, but the cost of purchasing or repairing a car can be a challenge, especially for those with less than perfect credit. Ways to Work is a program of Family Services of Western Pennsylvania and Westmoreland Community Action that offers a solution by providing loans at an affordable interest rate. The loan can be used to purchase a pre-owned vehicle or repair a car. For more info, check out www.pawaystowork.org or call toll free 866-965-5929, ext. 650.
Congratulations M3 Students
Four Mothers Making More (M3) students recently graduated from Westmoreland County Community College. Congratulations to (L to R): Caryn LaRue and Gretchen Snyder, Office Technology/Medical Billing graduates; Angela Williams, Associate in Arts and Trish Kijowski who graduated with a Dental Hygiene degree.
Mothers Making More a program launched in 2010 by United Way of Westmoreland County as a way to support and assist single mothers through college so that they can earn a family-sustaining income and achieve financial independence.The goal of M3 is to assist single mothers complete their college education with a network of supports in place that will assist them overcome barriers that have prevented them from completing college in the past. For more information about M3, please call 724.837.6339.
Award Winners Announced
Congratulations to Tim Phillips, Director of Community
Prevention Services, on being selected as the winner of CAAP's
2015 Staff Member of the Year, Distinguished
Service Award! Some individuals go above and beyond the call of
duty by touching lives in special ways. They make the road just
a little easier for the rest of us and encourage all of us to
even greater accomplishments. Tim is surely one of those people
and very deserving of the award.
Click here to "GET IN" with Westmoreland. and learn about how you can GET INformed about how the drug overdose epidemic affects you and your community; GET INvolved in stopping deaths from drug abuse; and GET INvested in making a change in your community -- because it's not just someone else's problem.
Tay Waltenbaugh Comcast Newsmakers Interview
Watch as Tay talks about the Neighborhood Partnership Program in the City of Jeannette
Guests Enjoy Tour of Westmoreland County
Tay Waltenbaugh, Nermine Nabil Hafez Habib, Shaima Hassan Meligy, and Sara Khalil
A warm welcome to two fellows who are in Pittsburgh from
Egypt as part of an educational opportunity through the State
Department. Nermine Nabil Hafez Habib is an Operations Manager
and Field Researcher at Beit al Karma Consulting, one of the
largest and most well-known consulting firms in Egypt. She
has a strong interest in social entrepreneurship and is
currently at Pittsburgh Community Services, Inc. (PCSI),
the community action agency for the City of Pittsburgh.
Standards for Excellence Recertification
Westmoreland Community Action is proud to be able to continue
to display this Seal of Excellence awarded by the Pennsylvania
Association of Nonprofit Organizations. WCA was again
awarded accreditation under the Standards for Excellence®
program, which is bestowed only to the most well-managed and
responsibly governed nonprofit organizations that have
demonstrated continued compliance with 56 specific Standards
for Excellence® based on honesty, integrity, fairness,
respect, trust, responsibility, and accountability. WCA
has met, complied with, and integrated the Standards for
Excellence® into all its activities to successfully
complete this voluntary accreditation program. WCA was
first awarded this Seal of Excellence in May 2006 and was
re-accredited under the program in 2011 and 2014.
Congressman Murphy Presents Check
To the delight of everyone involved with
Shop Demo Depot, Congressman Tim Murphy recently presented
Westmoreland Community Action with a check for $540,000 from the
Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Community
Tay Waltenbaugh Comcast Newsmakers Interview
Westmoreland Community Action strengthens communities and families to eliminate poverty.
WCA’s Board of Directors represents the interests of Community Action in Westmoreland County. The volunteer board is comprised of representatives from the public, private, and low-income sectors of our county. Under their guidance, WCA provides the many programs to help individuals and communities achieve self-sufficiency.
Hours of Operation: Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
226 South Maple Avenue,
We Provide Services to Residents of Westmoreland County
At Westmoreland Community Action, we provide services to residents in towns and townships throughout Westmoreland County, PA including: Adamsburg, Alverton, Arnold, Bolivar, Claridge, Crabtree, Delmont, Derry, Donegal, East Vandergrift, Export, Greensburg, Harrison City, Herminie, Irwin, Jeannette, Kecksburg, Latrobe, Ligonier, Lower Burrell, Mammoth, Manor, Monessen, Mount Pleasant, Murrysville, New Alexandria, New Florence, New Kensington, New Stanton, North Belle Vernon, Norvelt, Scottdale, Smithton, South Greensburg, Southwest Greensburg, Stahlstown, Trafford, Vandergrift, West Newton, Youngstown, and Youngwood.
Townships in Westmoreland County include:
Allegheny Township, Bell Township, Cook Township, Derry Township, Donegal Township, East Huntingdon Township, Fairfield Township, Hempfield Township, Ligonier Township, Lower Burrell Township, Loyalhanna Township, Mount Pleasant Township, Murrysville Township, North Huntingdon Township, Penn Township, Rostraver Township, Saint Clair Township, Salem Township, Sewickley Township, South Huntingdon Township, Upper Burrell Township, Unity Township, and Washington Township