Mail Icon Facebook Icon Twitter Icon Share
NEWS & EVENTS Subscribe to rss news feed  

The Breathe Project has teamed with The Pittsburgh Foundation in an online youth engagement program for local middle and high school students.

 

The program, known as New Voices of Youth, the fourth of its kind for The Pittsburgh Foundation, gives young people in southwestern Pennsylvania an opportunity to make their voices heard about important community issues that affect their lives. Participants in this year’s program are being asked to develop projects that raise awareness about air quality challenges in the Pittsburgh area and help to clean the region’s air.

 

“Young people are especially vulnerable to the harmful effects of air pollution because they tend to spend more time outdoors and their lungs are still developing,” said Grant Oliphant, president and CEO of The Pittsburgh Foundation. “We are excited to work with the Breathe Project to deliver information and encouragement that will allow youth to take a lead role in providing solutions for cleaner air.”

 

In the fall of 2011, The Heinz Endowments launched the Breathe Project, a coalition made up of businesses, including heavy metals manufacturers and power producers; environmental nonprofits; government; civic organizations; and individuals working to improve air quality for healthy families and a stronger economy. The New Voices of Youth program will help to engage youth as agents of change in this growing movement to achieve a clean-air future for southwestern Pennsylvania.

 

“Thankfully, much of the highly visible pollution that earned Pittsburgh the title of ‘Smoky City’ a century ago is long gone,” said Endowments President Robert Vagt. “But with the dangerous health effects of pollutants better quantified, the region has not kept up with more stringent standards and its air quality ranks among the worst in the nation.” Vagt said the broad coalition that achieved a dramatic turnaround in air quality in the 1940s and 1950s must be re-activated to achieve the same success in this decade. “Young people as a group are essential to this effort,” said Vagt. “They are more attuned to the issues than many other groups and they understand the change that is possible with group action.”

 

Participants will work with adult mentors to design projects that increase awareness and take action for cleaner air in the Pittsburgh region. Projects also can create first-time opportunities for young people to participate as volunteers or in a service-learning opportunity to improve our air quality.

 

Detailed information about the program, including resources for teachers and an educational toolkit about air quality, is available at a special website developed as a hub to support the initiative at www.new-voices-of-youth.org.

 

Entries should be submitted at the site. The closing date for the first round of entries is May 8, 2013. Regular updates will be posted on the New Voices of Youth website detailing progress on student projects.

 

A Student Advisory Council composed of 15 local high school students will meet periodically to review entries and select finalists. Top entries are eligible for up to $2,500 in grant funding from The Pittsburgh Foundation to turn their ideas into action in this hands-on approach to community philanthropy.

 

Young people are also encouraged to participate in an online forum on the site by sharing photographs, essays, artwork, ideas and comments that may help improve submitted entries and inspire new projects.

 

The Voices of Youth series of competitions kicked off in 2009 with Art in Public, and was followed by two additional competitions encouraging youth and youth-serving organizations to create change.

 

“We are excited to continue working with our area youth on ideas to better our community with the New Voices of Youth,” said Oliphant.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

events
July 31, 2014
EPA to Hold Pittsburgh Hearings on Clean Power Plan Proposed Rule The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will hold public hearings for the Clean Power Plan Proposed Rule the week of July 28 in four locations across the U.S., including Pittsburgh. The hearings will provide interested parties the opportunity to present data, … Learn More
July 17, 2014
Clean Water Action to Host N.Y. Group with Big Victory in Fight for Cleaner Air Clean Water Action this week is hosting members of the Clean Air Coalition of Western New York (CACWNY) to share their story of community effort to reduce harmful emissions from the Tonawanda Coke plant, an industrial facility with a heinous … Learn More
October 5, 2014
Save the Date: Clean Air Dash 5K Save the date and start logging those training miles! The Group Against Smog and Pollution (GASP) second annual Clean Air Dash 5K on the South Side’s Three Rivers Heritage Trail will be here before you know it. The fast, flat and … Learn More
July 1, 2014
Public Hearing: Allegheny County Open Burning Regulations The Allegheny County Health Department will hold a public hearing on Tuesday, July 1 at 10 a.m. in the first floor conference room at Building #7 of the Clack Health Center, 301 39th Street, Lawrenceville, to take testimony on proposed … Learn More
June 6, 2014
Portraits of Air: Pittsburgh   What if you could easily see the invisible particles in the air you breathe?   It can happen through a visual arts exhibition opening next month in conjunction with the 2014 Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival.   From … Learn More
May 16, 2014
A Regional Summit on Asthma in Our Community You’d be hard pressed to find someone in the Pittsburgh area who doesn’t either have asthma or have a friend or loved one struggling with asthma.   What’s the connection between our region’s poor air quality and asthma–and what challenges … Learn More
April 4, 2014
Ride Against Smog and Pollution   Whether you hit the trails or the roads, bike riding in Pittsburgh is a fabulous way to see the sights, commute and get a little exercise–not to mention, it’s a zero-emissions form of transportation.   When you ride, you … Learn More
March 27, 2014
Save the Date: The Water-Energy Nexus Wasting water is like sending energy down the drain. That’s because water utilities use a tremendous amount of energy to treat and deliver water. Then after the water reaches your home or workplace, more energy is consumed to heat, cool … Learn More
See all events
latest on facebook
  • Breathe Project

    We couldn't say it better!

    Jul 31st 2:39pm • No Comments

    Spotted Downtown this morning! Amen!

    Jul 31st 2:12pm • No Comments

    Environmental & industry groups are flocking to Pittsburgh for the public hearings on the #EPA Clean Power Plan in Downtown tomorrow & Friday.

    Reid Frazier of @AlleghenyFront breaks down what all the fuss is about.

    Will you attend?

    EPA Clean Power Plan Hearings in Pittsburgh on Thursday & Friday: What You Need To Know

    www.alleghenyfront.org

    Photo: Reid R. Frazier July 30, 2014 The Environmental Protection Agency has outlined a plan to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants by 30 percent of their 2005 levels by the year 2030.�

    Jul 30th 12:59pm • No Comments

    New study: trees are saving lives & preventing lung disease by removing air pollution - especially in cities.

    Hear hear!

    Trees remove enough air pollution to save 850 people a year

    www.nrs.fs.fed.us

    You are here: NRS Home / NRS NRS News / News Releases / First national study finds trees saving lives, reducing respiratory problems: Air pollution modeling reveals broad-scale impacts of pollution removal by trees

    Jul 29th 5:11pm • 1 Comment

    "Really interesting -- often..." on their own link.

    Jul 25th 7:27pm • No Comments

  • Press Contact
    The Heinz Endowments
    Jennifer Bails, Breathe Project communications coordinator
    Phone: 412-855-1329
    Email: jbails@heinz.org
    JOIN OUR COALITION Be part of the growing movement for clean air in the Pittsburgh region.
    Thank you for your support! Look for our updates in your email box. Please share this initiative with others who would be interested in joining as well:
    CONNECT WITH US
    Today's Air Quality Forecast:
    Moderate
    Tomorrow's Forecast:
    Moderate
    Learn More About AQI >
    CONTACT
    © Breathe Project 2014. All Rights Reserved.
    Terms of Service
    Privacy Policy
    Learn More