50 Years of CHS Programming

On this day in 1971, Community Human Services was incorporated. From our grassroots beginnings in South Oakland to our current site locations throughout Allegheny County, we are so incredibly honored to continue providing meaningful programming that helps support adults and children living in communities that suffer from food and housing insecurity, substance use disorder, poverty, and societal stigma. As an advocate for our programming and a friend to CHS, help us celebrate our 50th birthday by donating a gift that will provide a local family with quality food and safe housing.

CHS has survived great social and economic changes throughout the years. We all need help during our lives, and for some, getting help from us means the difference of eating, having a home, or being safe. Our organization was born from the collapse of the steel industry when a group of neighbors in South Oakland decided to take matters into their own hands to support one another. Making potluck dinners, providing childcare, and incorporating social programming that brought critical resources quickly and directly to families, our founders saw the restoration of relationships with one another, to the community, and in the physical and mental health of those who accepted help. Today, we have over 50 contracts for programming that empowers individuals and families to live in stable housing, connect to community resources, build relationships, and access quality food. 

We cannot ignore the great social changes happening right now. Tomorrow is the one year anniversary of George Floyd's murder. In response to the Black Lives Matter protests, our organization continued supporting its clients and staff who were angry, deeply saddened, and confused by the unnecessary and painful reminder that our belief that everyone has value is not universal. Like many other organizations, we were faced with a challenge: to be more inclusive, transparent, and equitable in our programming, leadership, and board. It's a challenge we gladly accept and are currently working on. If there is anything we have learned in our fifty years of social work, challenges are necessary to grow and remain relevant to the needs of the communities we serve. 

We have two exciting opportunities for you to join in this upcoming fall:

Project Silk is hosting their third annual art show, Black Embodiment, and this year the show includes two exhibits: A Pose in Time and Through Our Eyes. We'll have more details for you soon. Follow Project Silk on Facebook to stay updated on all of their events and opportunities.. 

The Big Share returns in September to raise money for our food pantry in South Oakland. Money raised during this event will support the pantry's ability to continue purchasing the food needed to relieve the increased food insecurity within Allegheny County. The pantry distributes fresh produce, healthy meat and dairy, and dog + cat food to over 850 families each month—a 42% increase since before the pandemic. Follow the food pantry on Instagram to see additional communication regarding this fundraising event.

As an advocate for our programming and a friend to CHS, help us celebrate our 50th birthday by donating a gift today. With your support, we can continue providing local families with access to resources they need to make their lives more equitable, healthy, and safe.

Thank you as always,

Sarah Nesbella
Development Coordinator


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