ECS’ Out of School Time (OST) recently celebrated the culmination of its summer program with two...
The Five Episcopal Bishops of Pennsylvania drafted a letter to state legislators, highlighting four ways that they can help to address gun violence:
Are you looking for an opportunity to engage with your community? ECS is currently looking for community members, leaders and stakeholders to join the St. Barnabas Community Advisory Council. Council members will support initiatives that increase the awareness of the community’s needs and help inform the efficacy of programs and services offered through St. Barnabas Community Resource Center (SBCRC).
Primary Functions of the SBCRC Advisory Council
A key function of community advisory council members is community engagement. Council members will support ECS’ initiatives to engage community members in efforts to understand the community’s needs and inform the efficacy of programs and services offered through SBCRC. Council members will serve as trusted advisors for ECS’ St. Barnabas Mission Community Resource Center, located at 6006 West Girard Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19151. In addition, Council members may be invited to speak on legislation and policy issues on community’s behalf and to advance our Advocacy platform.
Ideal candidates will be familiar with ECS’ mission, vision, values, principles and the programs and services used to support upward economic mobility. Successful candidates will have a history of positive community engagement or experience in one of the five areas identified as crucial for economic growth. Strong communication skills, the ability to cultivate interpersonal and organizational relationships, and diplomacy are also required. In addition, council members must possess personal qualities that include integrity, inclusiveness, credibility and a desire to improve the lives of those managing poverty.
The Advisory Council will meet a minimum of 2 hours each month and should expect to spend up to 5 hours per month conducting council business. This is not a paid position, however, ECS identified resources to remove participation barriers to support the engagement of selected Council members.
Member Duties and Responsibilities
- Understand and demonstrate a commitment to Episcopal Community Services’ mission, vision, values, programs
- Fully engage in Council activities by contributing knowledge and skill to its work and activities.
- Attend monthly community advisory council meetings
- Evaluate programs and services to provide candid, honest and constructive feedback
- Participate in the development and deployment of community engagement opportunities and events
- Avoid potential and actual conflicts of interest
- Serve as active advocates and ambassadors for the SBCRC
- Identify and support possible funding opportunities
As many followers of ECS know, Community is one of our 4 core values. The Holy Spirit has a way of working through Communities, through our interconnected nature, silently accomplishing things that go beyond the sum of our individual parts. This is one of those stories.
With the support of Senator Hughes, the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services has awarded a $75,000 grant to Episcopal Community Services to support post-pandemic expansion of services and workshops at St. Barnabas Community Resource Center (SBCRC) that will address the human services needs of the community of the Carroll Park/Haddington neighborhoods as identified in a 2021 community needs assessment.
The grant funds will be used towards Mental/Behavioral Health services at SBCRC, workshops provided by ECS’ five subject specialists and community partners, and a community development feasibility study.
While speaking of the grant, Soneyet Muhammad, Chief of Programs, said, “What makes this even more enriching and powerful is this is exactly the type of work that we’ve learned communities wanted in this center from our 2021 Community Needs Assessment…we’re here, we’re investing, and with legislative support, we’ll continue to enrich the services that are needed so that people can be stabilized and invest in their mental health.”
Learn more about the grant here:
MLK’s Philly Connections
There are amazing programs in Philadelphia designed to support people who are managing the impacts of poverty. Yet too often, those deeply impacted are cut off from the source that can help.
During ECS’ annual Staff Appreciation Day, a special award was presented to Jasmine Walker, the OST (Out of School Time) Program Manager at Feltonville Intermediate.
We are in the season of Advent, a four-week time of waiting for the light of the Star of Bethlehem to announce the good news of the birth of Jesus. A light that continues to shine brightly, even in the face of so much darkness across the land.
In my tradition, we are asked to be Advent people. As I reflect on that challenge, I ask myself what it means to be a people of the light.
It would be easy to be overwhelmed by the darkness of poverty, of violence in all its forms, of environmental destruction, authoritarianism, racism, and unbridled greed. Depending on one’s background and resources, the darkness is often seen as someone else’s problem or ignored altogether as walls of privilege, circumstances, and greed give false security from the darkness.