Working Cities Pittsfield Celebrates 2 Years of Success

On July 25, more than 100 people gathered at the Christian Center, despite the rain, to celebrate community. Many people are a part of this work. Some attend Working Cities Wednesdays, others embody our strategies for community change within their organizations, and still, others are building their leadership skills to become another voice for change. We are all working toward a Pittsfield that is just, thriving, and safe.

So how are we doing? Below is a list of some of the progress we’ve made together. We shared it at the event, but want to make sure you didn’t miss any of the good news.

53 graduates of Getting Ahead
• 4 placed on city boards and commissions
• 4 hired by the city
• 8 got better jobs/were promoted
• Businesses who hired graduates report learning from them
• Spanish graduates report feeling less isolated
• 6 graduates reported improving their finances without getting a new job or raise

15 Bridges Out of Poverty trainings for 236 people

Working Cities Wednesday
• 72 unique residents engaged
• 7 resident-led projects (3 completed)
• City Candidate Mixer

Initiatives building inclusion into their models
• Pittsfield Moves!
• Pittsfield to Pillow Express
• Community-Based Research barriers to the arts
• Organizations paying people with lived experience for their time and expertise
• Child care, food, and transportation being offered for more meetings and community events
• More events providing Spanish interpretation

Additionally, the Mt. Auburn Associates, the evaluator hired by the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, our main funder, noted the following in their midpoint evaluation:

• “WCP is a model for other organizations in the city for engaging residents meaningfully and authentically.”
• “WCP has seen early, anecdotal progress of increasing resident leadership in broader community forums across the city.”
• “Interviews suggest that WCP has contributed to early, fairly anecdotal, but positive system changes.”

Click here to read the Berkshire Eagle article.

group of people at table looking a question on poster
Working Cities Pittsfield celebrated its two-year anniversary Wednesday with a community cookout in the Christian Center. Participants ate and talked about what they’ve accomplished, and looked to the future. GILLIAN JONES – THE BERKSHIRE EAGLE