PACS program is making a difference in Pittsburgh's Homewood neighborhood

Pitt-Assisted Communities & Schools (PACS) was established to develop and support a feeder pattern-wide network of university-assisted community schools in Homewood that will improve the academic, physical and mental health, social, and economic outcomes for the children and families who live, learn, work, and play in Homewood.   

PACS, in partnership with the Homewood Children's Village, works diligently to enrich the lives of children, youth, and families at Faison Elementary School, Lincoln Elementary School, and Westinghouse Academy.  


Since the launch of the program in January 2016, the PACS team has documented the existence of over 25 Pitt-related programs and services that serve children, youth, and families in Homewood. PACS has also begun to connect, streamline, and identify opportunities for various units on campus to collaborate and to increase university resources deployed in Homewood. 

Through PACS' collaboration with various university partners, the program has provided school-wide professional development training on trauma-informed care at Faison Elementary (Yodit Betru, SSW), established the College in High School program at Westinghouse Academy offering Introduction to Social Work (Keith Caldwell, SSW), conducted a children’s brain development workshop at Westinghouse Academy for teen parents (Dr. Judy Cameron, Department of Psychiatry), provided health assessments and health education at a community health awareness event (School of Nursing, School of Medicine, School of Dental Medicine), and facilitated various lectures and seminars for Westinghouse athletes and student leaders (Department of Sociology, Katz Graduate School of Business, School of Medicine).  

In addition to these facilitated initiatives, the PACS team is in the process of developing sustainable, evidence-based interventions for each of the schools in the Westinghouse Network.  The PACS team is excited about the 2016-2017 academic year as programming expands in Homewood and more children and youth are provided with resources necessary to succeed in school and lead healthier lives. 

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