Transcripts of full meetings of the council.

Thank you. I'm just going to say a few words because the words can't really speak for our appreciation of the City Council and of the City of Philadelphia.

We thank you so much for the opportunity to be before you today. On behalf of all of us at PathWays PA, this citation means more to us than any award or citation that we've received because you at City Council are really where everything resides to help the City move forward and help all the residents move forward.

We especially want to thank Councilman Greenlee for support of PathWays PA and the continued support of issues that affect all working families, as well as Marian Tasco, Wilson Goode, Jr., and all of the other City Council people who really support what workers and residents in the City need.

I would also like to thank the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce for selecting PathWays PA as their 2013 non-profit of the year. The award and today's citation are a perfect start for us of 2013, which is our 35th year of operation, and we have helped well over 75,000 women, children, teens, and families throughout our years of service.

Much has changed since we began in 1978 as the Women's Association for Women's Alternatives, and when we changed our name to PathWays PA, we realized that we were not an association and the alternative was an alternative to poverty, and that really is our mission. So we took on the name of PathWays PA, because what our mission is is to create a path forward for women, children, teens, and families to move forward economically and move forward without violence and to move forward in terms of family well-being for every member of their family, whomever that might be.

We started with the residential center, as mentioned, in Delaware County, which serves many Philadelphia families as they struggle and succeed in staying together so everybody can feel loved, wanted, and move forward educationally.

The range of issues that we cover are adult literacy. We are working with the library in the Northwest, as well as in the Center City and West Philly offices. We do financial literacy, really helping people move forward, deal with their credit issues and know, because we know what you need in order to move forward. We developed the self-sufficiency standard for Pennsylvania and specifically for Philadelphia because we know that people don't have enough money because they don't have enough money. And we work on the policy issues that help families stay stable, healthy, and move forward.

While we've seen many changes, our mission stays the same. And families come to us to build paths out of poverty and to build paths toward success. They come as teen moms who are trying to do it differently for their children than their families were able to do for them. We work with people who lived with abuse and neglect and have more inner strength than any of us might have, and we look for that strength and we promote it. We help people develop the jobs. We're a facilitator for themselves that will help them support their families, learn how to manage the money that they do have, learn how to earn more money, and learn how to get a job that will help them sustain their families.

Throughout our 35th anniversary year, we'll be holding events focused on the families we work with every day, and the theme of this year for us is "Writing the Path." Our wonderful staff, our Board members here with us today, and our clients across the region and those with whom we work in Philadelphia are really the people that allow us to be here, and we're so honored to be honored both by the Chamber of Commerce and mostly by City Council.

Everything we do is cost free, and we reach out during these difficult times as far as we can. And one of the things we're doing -- we always try to do new things to fill in the gaps that we see -- is for our free tax service, which will be at Suburban Station for the first time, and our opening is tomorrow at 2:30 by the rail lines 1 and 2, because we're always trying to reach more people who might not know of services that can help their families.

And in closing, I just want to say thank you so much to City Council and thank you to all of the members that support our work and the work of the non-profits in the City that work with families in need.

Thank you.

Keyboard shortcuts

j previous speech k next speech