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Impact Update - July 2018
Posted on Friday, July 20, 2018 at 7:02 AM

Erie Together is a countywide, grassroots “collective impact movement” to prevent and reduce poverty and make the Erie region a community where everyone can learn, work and thrive. Hundreds of people from varying backgrounds are engaged in this effort. Erie Together has been very successful in aligning local activity, expertise and resources to address pressing community challenges, and its presence can be felt throughout the region. 

Erie Together is a CONVENER, assembling Erie County residents and people from the business, education, healthcare, social service, government, workforce development, and faith-based sectors to thoroughly explore critical topics and successfully accomplish local priorities. The movement’s inclusive network, comprehensive body of work, and action-oriented process are unprecedented in the region and have been recognized as a model across the country. Local leaders and participants alike have credited Erie Together with creating the most effective, widespread spirit of cross-sector collaboration that our community has ever known, building a foundation for the success of other local initiatives. Furthermore, Erie Together participants impact their personal, professional and volunteer circles with the knowledge gained, relationships built, and resources developed through the Erie Together movement.

Erie Together is a DOER, taking tangible action to tackle local issues. Three overarching objectives guide the work: (1) more children becoming successful adults; (2) more individuals securing and maintaining employment; and (3) more self-sufficient families. Select accomplishments highlighting Erie Together’s proactive response to local needs include: 

  • When data showed significant percentages of Erie County children not ready to learn when entering kindergarten, Erie Together created an entire suite of kindergarten readiness resources to help parents, schools, and early childhood programs better prepare kids for school.

  • When employers and educators needed help connecting to expose students to local companies and jobs, Erie Together created Career Street, a countywide career exploration initiative. The program, now housed within the Erie County Vocational-Technical School Foundation, has provided over 30,000 student experiences since 2014.

  • When educators, the private sector, and Emerge 2040 identified career pathway development as a top local priority, Erie Together created the Erie County Career Pathways Alliance (ECCPA), a business/education partnership for college, career and life readiness. Now in its third year, the group has gelled around the five PA state-designated career pathways, created streamlined ways for business to effectively advise the educational community, and is creating vibrant opportunities to expose students to local companies and jobs, shaping our future workforce.

  • When our community, through UnifiedErie, called for a “reentry strategy” to help create a safer region, Erie Together led development of the Erie County Reentry Services & Support Alliance (ECRSSA). Now a program of GECAC, the ECRSSA has assisted over 300 individuals with a history of criminal justice involvement to find jobs, secure housing or address other self-sufficiency challenges; it has helped keep recidivism to a minimum; and it has saved an estimated $2,000,000 in taxpayer dollars. 

Erie Together participants and funders make this work possible, and are essential to continuing our strong, collaborative network, proven process, and ability effectively address local priorities to make the Erie region a community of opportunity where everyone can learn, work and thrive.  

   
 

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