Category: Lifestyle Written by Courier Newsroom
I WAS THERE—Alma Speed Fox, civil rights activist who took part in the march and raised awareness, conveys her recollection of that day.
The month of April 2013 marked the 45th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.; the riots that erupted in cities across the country, including Pittsburgh; and the proclamation by then-President Lyndon B. Johnson calling for a Day of National Mourning to be observed three days after King’s April 4, 1968, death.
Pitt’s University Library System recounted Pittsburgh’s participation in the Sunday, April 7,1968, Day of National Mourning with a free public program and a compelling series of black-and-white photographs taken that day by Charles Martin, who enjoyed a 66-year career as a freelance photographer. Martin captured the day with his 35 mm Nikon camera as thousands of residents from around the region peacefully marched from the fire-ravaged Hill District to the Federal Building, Downtown, many dressed in their Sunday best.
The program was titled “The MLK Jr. Pittsburgh March: Through the Lens of Charles Martin.”
Laurence Glasco, a Pitt professor of history, put the event in historical context; and Martin, described, through a PowerPoint presentation, what it was like to be photographing the historic event. Twelve of Martin’s 189 photos from that day will be on display through the summer on the library’s ground floor, near the elevators.
Martin says when he heard that there might be violent clashes between police and the marchers, and that no traffic was being allowed into Downtown, he walked from the North Side to the Hill District to document the event. As it turned out, there were no clashes. Instead, Martin captured the participants—young and old, Black and White—marching peacefully to commemorate the life of King.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 01 May 2013 09:56
Category: Lifestyle Written by Courier Newsroom
MAY 1—Northside Institutional COGIC, 302 W. North Ave., North Side, will host the “The Gathering” When Women Pray at 7 p.m. The three-day event will feature guest speakers such as Evangelist Roberta Watkins, co-Pastor Sharon Robinson and Rev. Wanda Sawyer-Flipping. For more information, call 412-231-5683.
May Friendship Day
MAY 4—The Church Women United Pittsburgh Unit will host its May Friendship Day 2013 at 9:30 a.m. at Hebron United Presbyterian Church, 10460 Frankstown Rd., Penn Hills. The theme is “Swinging Wide the Doors of Hospitality.” This is a time to come together to honor women of all ages, to renew old friendships and cultivate new ones and to pray and celebrate together. For more information, call 412-371-2307.
MAY 5—Tori Walker, Eric Blackwell and Grubz Restaurant will host the First Sundays Gospel Jazz Jam Session & Brunch from 1:30-4:30 p.m. at Cabaret Hall, 7928 Frankstown Ave., Homewood. The first Sunday of every month, attendees will enjoy gospel, jazz, spoken word, anything that plants a positive seed. For more information, call 412-952-9491 or 412-247-2932.
MAY 10—Aspinwall Presbyterian Church, 299 Center Ave., Aspinwall, will host the Freya String Quartet in Concert at 7 p.m. This is the final concert in the 2012-2013 Aspinwall Presbyterian Performing Arts Series. This is free and open. For more information, call 412-781-2884.
MAY 11—The Pittsburgh Gospel Choir will host “O Sing Unto the Lord A New Song” at 4 p.m. at East Liberty Presbyterian Church, 116 S. Highland Ave., East Liberty. This will be a tribute to mothers, featuring Dr. Edward Moore, organist and director of Worship at East Liberty Presbyterian Church. For more information, visit www.pittsburghgospelchoir.org.
Mother’s Day Program
MAY 12—The Braddock Community Male Chorus will host a Mother’s Day Program at 4 p.m. at Watts Community Center, 736 Washington St., Braddock. Prizes will be given to the women with the best hats. For more information, call Gerald Smith at 412-818-4116.
MAY 17—Triedstone Baptist Church, 18 Harriet St., Rankin, will host its Women’s Conference. The theme is “Women Walking in Faith Weekend.” The conference, which will run through May 19, will feature guest preachers Rev. Linda Oliver, Rev. Nichele Nelson, Rev. Marilyn Black and more. Women’s Sunday will be held on May 19 at 11 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. guest preachers Rev. Helen Jackson and Rev. Brenda Gregg. For more information, call 412-271-3000.
Women’s Day Celebration
MAY 18—Antioch Baptist Church, 332 Elizabeth St., Sewickley, will host their annual Women’s Day Celebration. The two-day event will include the “What It Takes to be Fit for the Kingdom” workshop, several guests speakers and a guest soloist. On May 19 at 10:45 a.m. there will be Morning Worship Service will feature guest speaker Rev. Wanda Sawyer-Flipping. For more information, call 412-741-7688 or visit www.antiochfwbaptistsewickley.org.
MAY 25—The SHOUT (Sisters Hanging Out United in Truth) Women’s Ministry of Union Baptist Church of Swissvale, 2117 Collingwood Ave., Swissvale, will host a Women’s Brunch from 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Every fourth Saturday of the month, women will come together for food, fun and fellowship to praise the Lord and hear a Word from a woman of faith. For more information, call Synthia Brown at 412-466-1150.
MAY 26—Morningside Baptist Church, 4846 Sullivan St., Pittsburgh, will host its Annual Women’s Day. The theme is “Sweet Words.” The guest speaker for the morning service will be Sister Denise White of Shower of Blessings Ministries, along with guest soloists Jacqueline Scott. There will be a 3:30 p.m. program with Rev. Karen Jones, of Rising Star Baptist Church. For more information, call 412-361-1745.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 01 May 2013 09:53
Category: Lifestyle Written by Debbie Norrell
According to the Huffington Post, Michelle Obama has one of the most coveted wardrobes in the country, so it's no wonder that the tech world finally caught up and gave us an app that will help track her every garment.
Last Updated on Sunday, 28 April 2013 20:10
Category: Lifestyle Written by Rebecca Nuttall - Courier Staff Writer
HAPPY AWARDEE—Melanie Gefert-Azur, Bartko Foundation President; Tamiko Dawkins, award recipient and Carl Ellis Perkins, executive director Of Bartko Foundation. (Photo by Gail L. Manker)
At the age of 33, Aliquippa native Tamiko Dawkins, who had served in the United States Army, was determined to build a better life for her daughter. After a life filled with poverty, living in drug infested neighborhoods, the single mother set out on a journey to self-sufficiency.
Dawkins was this year’s recipient of the Irene O. Bartko Self Sufficiency Award, presented at the Bartko Foundation’s annual Irene’s Dream “Women in Deed Helping Women in Need” luncheon at the River’s Club on April 20.
“There was a time I wasn’t worthy to stand here today because of all the mistakes I was making in my life,” Dawkins said. “As my journey began I began to feel inspired to make a better life for my daughter. It doesn’t matter where you start, it’s about where you finish.”
The Bartko Foundation, a private non-profit organization, awards grants to minority mothers in the areas of education, transportation, housing and employment. In Dawkins case, that grant helped her and her daughter move in to a house the family is working toward purchasing.
“I can honestly say the feeling of gratitude I’m feeling right now is overwhelming,” Dawkins said. “I just thank God today because I know everything is because of him.”
Twenty-seven percent of single mothers live in poverty and minority single mothers are also at greater risk for involvement in abusive relationships. It is the mission of the Bartko Foundation’s mission to break the cycle of poverty and violence.
As of now, Dawkins has received a bachelor’s degree and has applied to master’s degree programs at two universities. She also works for the Veteran’s Administration.
“It’s changed my life tremendously. It made me want to work harder,” Dawkins said. “My major problem was unhealthy relationships, looking for love in all the wrong places and not loving myself.”
The Bartko Foundation’s assistance has also changed the outlook of Dawkins’ 17-year-old daughter Arnay Malcoul.
“It’s a great thing. I’m very proud of her. It’s very inspiring. It makes me want to work harder,” Malcoul said. “At first I was like I don’t want to go to college but I’ve been so inspired.”
In addition to Dawkins’ story, luncheon guests also heard from IOB Support Award honoree Elizabeth Murphy, who served as table sponsor chair for the event and has been a dedicated volunteer for the organization.
“I’ve observed how the organization has helped more and more women over the years,” Murphy said. “I’ve listened with awe to the struggles and achievements of the women we’ve heard from over the years. “
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Last Updated on Sunday, 28 April 2013 20:11
Category: Lifestyle Written by Rebecca Nuttall - Courier Staff Writer
CYNTHIA BATTLE (Photos by Gail Manker)
When Jolanda Carr’s two sons entered elementary school, they were already regularly misbehaving in class and difficult to discipline. However, with the help of OnTRACK, a program designed to help troubled youth, Carr’s sons’ behavior changed.
“Their behavior in kindergarten was just off the chart. That’s where the OnTRACK youth development specialist came in,” Carr said. “I was constantly getting calls—‘your son has been suspended; you have to come get him.’ So without OnTRACK, I might not have a job right now.”
OnTRACK was one of several programs highlighted as part of the Graduate Pittsburgh Summit at Hosanna House on April 22. The initiative works to increase the high school graduation rate in Allegheny County.
In line with this year’s focus on early indicators, OnTrack works with students at an early age in grades K-8 to reduce behaviors that lead to suspension before they lead to students dropping out high school. The organization’s youth development specialists, who work in the Woodland Hills and McKeesport school districts, focus on the philosophy of positive discipline to get to the root causes of bad behavior.
“The first few years when my sons came into my life were hard for them and that’s where the negative behavior was coming from,” Carr said.
The mission of the Graduate Pittsburgh Summit was to increase awareness of best practices and indicators of drop out risk factors. The event highlighted collaborations between schools, youth, parents, youth-serving organization, the community, government, and business.
Student behavior, such as that addressed by OnTRACK, kindergarten readiness, and attendance were the three early indicators discussed by a group of panelists. Communities in Schools of Pittsburgh-Allegheny County, a non-profit dropout prevention program that offers in-school programs, after-school programs, and alternative learning academies organized the event.
“I wanted it to be something that was practical and hands on so participants would have something tangible to take back to their school district or organization,” said CIS Executive Director Cindy Shafer.
Another program highlighted at the event was the Homewood Early Learning Experience Network, an early childhood education program connected to the Homewood Children’s Village, a community initiative aimed at transforming educational, health, social service, and physical conditions in the neighborhood.
“In the low income community, children don’t hear a lot of language. It’s usually, ‘no’, ‘stop’, ‘don’t do that’. These children don’t go to museums,” said Cynthia Battle, who leads the organization’s community outreach. “It’s not that these parents don’t love their children but they’re busy worrying about paying their bills.”
Battle, who worked for 17 years with the literacy organization Beginning with Books, said the early stages of a child’s development is crucial to their education later in life. She works going door-to-door and visiting home daycare centers to increase awareness of this connection.
“When you see a parent years later and they say you were right, you know these programs can work,” Battle said. “It’s good to see some of the children who are in high school and college now.”
The event was sponsored by EDMC-The Art Institute of Pittsburgh in partnership with a committee of organizations, school, and government offices.
Last Updated on Monday, 29 April 2013 06:56
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