“What Does Community Mean to You?”

At Freedom Radio we ask “What Does Community Mean to You?” We received one of the best answers yet last Saturday, September 20th, for the Power of Laughter Luncheon. Where has this month gone!?! It’s almost October, and my little “boss” has been planning my Mom’s birthday party since August. I suppose we both have been doing a bit of event planning as we have teamed up with Women for a Healthy Environment for our “Hairs to Your Health” Campaign. So in addition to that excitement…

I had a really good time at the 7th Annual Woman’s Walk for Peace.


It was good to be out with women and their loved ones in solidarity regarding the safety of our neighborhoods and the quality of life. The IERN WILL 12 Challenge asks you “What matters to you?” and it was an opportunity to see all the people that cared in the community.


These people are the change leaders and just like so many of the advocates in the community expressed, it takes us showing each other that we value our lives & we do it, “Block-by-Block.”

I really think the highlight of my afternoon was tied between Painting with “Wolf” my new artist-friend for the MLK Community Mural Project event & walking beside a woman whose chant went from “Peace… NOW!” to “Jitney… NOW…15 NOW!” within the first mile. [That’s a taxi & a bus, respectively, for those of you not in Pittsburgh.]

While I think the workout I received laughing and learning matched the mileage that I walked from my house to the starting point of the march to the end & travel to see the vendors. It provided awesome chances to talk to community providers that I’ve, now, invited to Freedom Radio. My walk however, confirmed the need to follow through on the fitness project for the “Hairs to Your Health” Campaign. It seems like responsibility continues, even a year after you received the title as “Champion” for Active Schools. Everyone’s feet were beat, but my soul was full.

I was able to celebrate with community to the sounds of Kindred the Family Soul, hosted by the Northside Coalition for Fair Housing. What more can you ask for?


I miss my family, and I think that could very well be why I enjoy my most recent celebrations in Pittsburgh. Just a week ago Freedom Radio streamed live from the 3rd Annual Power of Laughter Health Workshop and Comedy luncheon Hosted by Kim Coles. Let me tell you, Kim Coles with “Sneaky Salt” was a sight to see. These events always seem to mean so much to me since places were able to create an atmosphere similar to my family reunions. My family is big, so the crowd was just right & as usual I was either on my plate or taking the person-next-to-me’s, dessert, or somewhere “coloring.” Thanks to the MLK Mural Project I painted canvas at the National Aviary Park.

I think my daughters would have had fun panting feet & probably would have talked me into buying funnel cake & me attempting to feed it to the birds. It was good to get out, and no matter where I go I’m saying “Engineering for All” even for the #OurSchoolsNeed campaign. Check them out. We know what our schools need it’s, a few more Letters to Change Leaders from all of us, Transformational Leadership, Reflections along the 2014 IERN Sharpens Iron Summit Tour, and of course Systems-thinking education. Community mean “putting the pieces together” to ensure we create an infrastructure where learning opportunities are accessible at the intersection of skill development and community support.

Join me! Thanks to Northside Coalition for Fair Housing, Ourschoolsneed, Saving Black History In Pittsburgh Save The August Wilson Center, Brandi Fisher, Celeste Smith and her Son, La’Tasha D. Mayes, WWHAT’S UP?! Pittsburgh, Universal Peace Federation International – Pittsburgh, MLK Community Mural Project, Angels’ Place, Inc., Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank, Project Destiny of Pittsburgh Inc., Just Harvest, Family Foundations Early Head Start and all the other community providers and vendors that helped to show “What Community Means to Me”


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