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HEARTH Celebrates 20 Years Helping Homeless Families

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When a group of North Hills volunteers noticed a number of single homeless mothers and children struggling to find housing for their families, they took it upon themselves to step in. HEARTH Communications and Community Outreach Manager Victoria Gill says the organization is devoted to offering a “hand up, not a hand out” to area families.

“We don’t want to do it for them; we want them to go out there and do it for themselves," Gill explains. She says 94% of the families are coming from a domestic violence situation.  Volunteers prepare the 20 available apartments for women and their children prior to their arrival and counselors with HEARTH help the mothers find job training or enroll in school. 

Gill says the entire staff acts as cheerleaders for the families during their stay.  She believes HEARTH is impacting children as much as the women because they're inspired by watching their mother's journey and path to success. 

More Essential Pittsburgh segments can be heard here.

Katie Blackley is a digital editor/producer for 90.5 WESA, where she writes, edits and generates both web and on-air content for features and daily broadcast. She's the producer of Pittsburgh Explainer and our Good Question! series. She also covers history and the LGBTQ community. kblackley@wesa.fm
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