Award #70: YNGBLKPGH

Brian Burley can barely contain his enthusiasm when asked about YNGBLKPGH. That’s because the author, businessman, mentor and Pittsburgh son is eager to change society’s view about what it means to be young, black, and living in the city of Pittsburgh. Burley was spurred into action during one of his mentoring sessions. A student questioned…

Award #69: Trash Bubbles

There’s little doubt the onslaught of packaging this holiday season will bring about more than our fair share of waste. In fact, nationwide, we collectively throw out about 25% more trash from Thanksgiving through New Year’s than we do any other time of the year. Enter artist, Lynn Radford.  For the last five years she…

Award #68: TEDx Youth Blue Slide Park

Mark your calendar for November 19, 2017, when speakers, entrepreneurs, and inventors take center stage at Repair the World in Pittsburgh to share their ideas and spark conversation. There’s a twist—it will be kids who are mostly running the show. Going with the theme Create Your World, this independently organized TEDx Youth Blue Slide Park event is…

Award #67: Allentown Then and Now

Armed with cameras and tripods, groups of elementary school students from the Allentown Learning and Engagement Center (ALEC) joined Ryan Haggerty and other local photographers for an art project they call Then and Now. The mission: Capture modern day images of the Allentown and Beltzhoover neighborhoods, and display the recreated images of these neighborhoods next to…

Award #66: Free Art PGH

Who loves a scavenger hunt? Certainly count Ian Jones as an avid fan. Jones, a seasoned local photographer who moved to Pittsburgh ten years ago, touts the Steel City as his great artistic motivator. He takes the idea of a scavenger hunt one step further with a community wide movement he coined Free Art PGH….

Award #65: Spare Change

Do you know someone who can take the littlest bit of money—say a few coins—and make it go a long way? That’s exactly what the guys behind Spare Change are doing. They’re taking the spare change they make while busking (street performing) and using it to make an awesome impact in the city. The crowd…

Award #64: Kenny’s

There’s something awesome about home improvement shows that find houses and spaces that need some TLC, invest a bunch of love and energy in them, and restore them to the warm, fresh, welcoming gems they once were. It’s easy to get sucked into those programs and want to be part of a revitalization project—and that’s…

Award #63: Global Minds

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Many adults struggle to find a way to be a positive light in this tense political climate, but Peyton Klein seems to know exactly what is needed: honest, real, open communication that encourages connections. Peyton’s determined to build bridges between people to expose our humanity…

Award #62: Hope Night

Mr. Rogers once said in an interview: “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of disaster, I remember my mother’s words, and I am…

Award #61: Girls Write Pittsburgh

Toni Morrison. J.K. Rowling. Emily Dickinson. Maya Angelou. Harper Lee. Next in this list could be a young girl getting her writing start here in the Steel City with Girls Write Pittsburgh. Girls Write Pittsburgh is looking to build strength, skills, and self-awareness for teen girls using the power of the pen. Providing a safe, supportive, and stable…

Award #58: Project Ignite

Consider a high school education in which students design an iPhone app, build a hologram projector, construct a minecraft server, and design quadcopters. This is not your mama’s high school curriculum! Project Ignite is a student run outreach organization at Carnegie Mellon University offering a project-based educational program for high school students in the Pittsburgh…

Project #57: Community-Sourced Mixtape Project

Imagine that you’re listening to a podcast full of stories from everyone in a neighborhood, now imagine that those stories are set to dope beats, and now imagine that they’re full of poetry, singing, and rapping. Plus, it comes along with a zine full of lyrics, artwork, and pictures. Something like Storycorps, but you can…