We provide support to community-based programs in Southwestern Pennsylvania sponsored by or associated with the Sisters of Mercy. Our goal is to strengthen the capacity of these programs to increase their effectiveness and sustainability, and to support innovative projects that will enhance their impact on the community. Grants to legacy programs may include:
- General operating support for organizations that demonstrate the capacity to produce outcomes for residents and the community.
- Leadership development and growing the next generation of leaders.
- Strategic planning and program-specific planning to accelerate innovation.
- Limited capital funding for facilities and technology linked to programming and operational improvements.
Stories of Hope
Pittsburgh Mercy’s Operation Safety Net (OSN)
V. is a 58-year-old female fleeing a violent personal relationship in New York. Per the suggestion of a police officer, V. arrived at the Winter Shelter and was crying. Operation Safety Net® (OSN) staff sat down with her to learn why she was upset. She proceeded to tell her story which included an active mental health crisis. She said she had no idea where to turn and that she had been praying for a miracle. She also had a fever and what appeared to be the flu. She struggled as a diabetic to maintain insulin treatment because her insurance had not transferred from New York. We set a plan for her to receive the physical care she needed because she had been off her insulin for five days. Our team sat in the emergency department with her because after so many failed attempts in hospitals, she was reluctant to believe that anyone would help her. The hospital admitted her for five days. After she was discharged, OSN staff worked with V. to create a plan and she is now staying at Bethlehem Haven’s shelter and receiving services. V. tells people that finding help at the Winter Shelter that evening saved her life.
Pittsburgh Mercy Food Pantry
Our care management team has shared numerous instances related to feedback from persons served commenting on how unique it is that we are providing a safe place to discuss food insecurity, a topic that they often struggled with how to approach. It also was frequently noted that we did not just talk about food needs but provided a wide variety of items that serve specific dietary needs and items for those without the ability to cook a traditional meal.
Recently a person served was struggling due to the circumstances of COVID-19 and not working. Due to having underlying conditions, she was also having a hard time grocery shopping. She became very emotional when talking about struggling to put food on the table and never having this challenge before.
“She spoke about never expecting for a doctor’s office to be able to provide food, and that it was a saving grace.”