With support from Public Lands Fund, SCA’s Pittsburgh Community Program expanded to include Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) young adult crew. This crew of six built a 20-foot three stringer bridge, improved 1, 095 feet of trail, removed 50 square feet of invasive plants and completed five Wilderness First Aid certifications. They also facilitated a Mentorship Day with Public Lands Fund at Frick Park. 
In 2021, SCA and Public Lands also partnered to host mini- First Aid Kit Activation at their Polaris Store Grand Opening and partnered with The North Face to prove a first-time camping experience to high school youth (video below).

Building Resiliency in Pittsburgh

In fall 2021, SCA’s Pittsburgh Community Program partnered with Public Lands Fund to complete conservation projects and inspire stewardship in the BIPOC Young Adult Crew. This team of five young adults, ages 18-21, was a roving crew with the goal of connecting youth to the outdoors through stewardship of public lands. The members had an immersive experience that included project work, touring city parks to observe environmental impacts and analyze solutions, community engagement, and a variety of trainings.
Four people outside
This crew focused on four city parks and green spaces throughout Pittsburgh including Seldom Seen Greenway, Riverview Park, McKinley Park, and Frick Park. Each location provided the team with a new and peculiar challenge in combination with routine maintenance needs. This varied set of circumstances offered ample opportunities for discourse and discussion on many conservation topics. In Riverview Park, the crew successfully built a 20-foot bridge to improve visitor safety. They also mitigated damage caused by a seep in McKinley Park, designed and constructed a new trail connecting Brashear Middle School to the Seldom Seen Greenway, and led Public Lands volunteers in diverting water by constructing a drainage dip in Frick Park. Lastly, these members protected a pollinator garden at Wilkins Primary school.
Four people on bridge outside with person taking selfie
Through SCA, young people have the opportunity to complete meaningful work that makes a positive impact on the world around them. SCA projects make tangible and positive impacts to the land, protecting and restoring parks and public lands, educating visitors about conservation, and increasing access to urban green spaces.

Community Engagement with Public Lands Fund

Public Lands Fund and SCA partnered to facilitate two community engagement opportunities in 2021. Due to the pandemic, SCA faced unexpected challenges as the Delta and then Omicron variants caused a surge in the number of Covid-19 cases. Safety of our members, staff, partners, and community are SCA’s top priority, and this surge shifted initial plans of engagement. SCA, alongside Public Lands, innovated quickly to provide opportunities that met standards and
kept our teams’ safety top of mind.
Seven people outside
Through these unexpected changes, SCA hosted a Mentorship Day with the young adult crew and a mini-First Aid Kit (FAK) Activation at the Polaris store grand opening. For the Mentorship Day, a small group of Public Lands employees was invited to join the crew in the field for direct, hands-on service. This created an opportunity for employees to work one-on-one alongside the members, engage in authentic conversations, and provide reciprocal mentorship. This group constructed a drainage dip in Frick Park to help mitigate water damage.
Four people standing around table
For the mini-FAK Activation, four Alumni Leaders joined Public Lands for their grand opening of the Polaris, OH store. The leaders hosted a tabling activity to engage customers in wilderness first aid 101. Participants made their own mini-FAK’s and learned first aid tips and tricks. This activity helped prepare participants for their next outdoor adventure. The Mentorship Day and mini-FAK activity resulted in over 300 participants engaged in environmental education/volunteerism and nearly 200 mini-FAK’s made.