Public Allies to work in Polish Hill

Public Allies is a 10 month AmeriCorps program for young adults (18-29 years old) who are interested in developing leadership skills to work in the nonprofit or public sector. Throughout the program, each Ally has a volunteer apprenticeship with different nonprofit organizations in Pittsburgh. They work there 4 days a week and 1 day a week they all come together to attend trainings. Part of the Public Allies experience is also to participate in a Team Service Project (TSP). The TSP allows a sub group of the Allies to learn about a Pittsburgh neighborhood and to facilitate a project there between now and spring 2011. There are Public Allies programs all over the United States, with the Pittsburgh program in operation since 2006, operating in partnership with the Coro Center for Civic Leadership.

Here’s a letter from the current group of Public Allies, to the residents of Polish Hill:

Dear Polish Hill,

This past Friday, October 22nd, you may have seen or even spoken with a group of eager young adults as they wandered through your beautiful neighborhood. We are Public Allies, AmeriCorps volunteers placed with local Non-Profits and engaged in extensive leadership training that is centered in Asset Based Community Development (ABCD). During our year of service, we are responsible for immersing ourselves in a Pittsburgh neighborhood- getting to know the residents, businesses, organizations and environment as best we can.  Our goal is to learn about the assets of your neighborhood and from your interests and suggestions, concentrate our efforts to support an event or initiative for the spring months.

As you may imagine, we have chosen to work in Polish Hill. At this point in time, we have no agenda for our proposal. During these next few months, we will solely be listening to you about what Polish Hill represents and your aspirations for its growth. If you are interested in being interviewed or have important information you’d like to share, do not hesitate to contact us at

You will see some of us on Sunday to help with the Halloween trail clean-up.


Brenda Battad (YWCA), Darelle Dogans (Bethlehem Haven), Sammy Jones (Investing Now), Justin Lamorella (Arthiritis Foundation), Maggie Negrete (Children’s Sickle Cell Foundation), Connor Sites-Bowen (Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank), Madeline Taylor (New Voices Pittsburgh), Kelly Tobias (Union Project), Andrea Zimmer (Bethlehem Haven).

The Public Allies working in Polish Hill work for different nonprofits and have diverse backgrounds, education and skills. Polish Hill is excited to welcome them to our neighborhood!

(photo above, left to right: Connor, Darelle, Kelly, Andrea, Brenda, Sammy, Justin, Maggie.  Absent: Madeline)