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Common Wealth Plants Sustainability on Elm Street

By Jeremy Lydic YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -- Shannon Blackshire had all but given up hope on making her passion into a business until a conversation with a neighbor changed everything. Six years ago, Blackshire and her family moved from Lake County to the Wick Park neighborhood on the north side of...

Art Education for Those ‘Who Need it the Most’

By Jeremy Lydic YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -- On a Tuesday evening, long after working professionals have gone home for the day, the first floor of the Ohio One building in downtown Youngstown bustles with activity as students fill the classrooms and workspaces at Students Motivated by the Arts, or Smarts. Voices...

Nonprofits Reassess Impact, Funding Sources

By Jeremy Lydic YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Come 2019, changes to the way nonprofit organizations report the results of grant-funded programs will demand higher accountability – and directors say that’s a good thing. At least, it’s good in that it will lead organizations to reassess how the money is spent and roll out more focused programs […]

By Jeremy Lydic YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -- Come 2019, changes to the way nonprofit organizations report the results of grant-funded programs will demand higher accountability – and directors say that’s a good thing. At least, it’s good in that it will lead organizations to reassess how the money is spent and...

The Way Station Makes Lifelong Impact

The Way Station Makes Lifelong Impact

By Jeremy Lydic COLUMBIANA, Ohio -- For more than 20 years, Timothy Colaizzi of Columbiana worked as a long-haul truck driver and was a driving instructor at TDDS Technical Institute in Lake Milton. But a few years ago, an adjustment in his health care changed that. Colaizzi is diabetic. He...

Merger Gives YWCA Mahoning Valley Greater Impact

Merger Gives YWCA Mahoning Valley Greater Impact

By Jeremy Lydic YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -- After more than a century of serving the needs of women in their respective cities, the YWCAs of Youngstown and Warren merged in May to form the YWCA Mahoning Valley – and that combination is already having a big impact. Pending a formal application...

Creating Opportunity with Training and Clay

By Jeremy Lydic SHARON, Pa. -- Wearing medical scrubs and a white lab coat, Calette Robinson applies a blood pressure cuff to Martina Moore, her classmate at the Hope Center for Arts and Technology. The class of eight is in the center’s lab room practicing what they’ve learned. Robinson is...

Walker Shapes Clay and Learns Lessons for Life

Christian Walker, founder of Animatr Apparel, wearing his "Humble Tee."

By Jeremy Lydic SHARON, Pa. — To some, the process of “throwing clay” might seem perfectly straightforward: Put the clay on the pottery wheel, shape it, fire and glaze it. But for Christian Walker, the process parallels many aspects of life. Walker was a sophomore at Farrell High School when he heard Bill Strickland speak […]

By Jeremy Lydic SHARON, Pa. -- To some, the process of “throwing clay” might seem perfectly straightforward: Put the clay on the pottery wheel, shape it, fire and glaze it. But for Christian Walker, the process parallels many aspects of life. Walker was a sophomore at Farrell High School when...

YMCA’s Impact Goes Well Beyond Fitness

YMCA of Youngstown Impact Goes Well Beyond Fitness

By Jeremy Lydic YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -- In September 2017, Richard Balog had “a bump” a bit smaller than a tennis ball surgically removed from behind his ear. His doctor said there was a 2% chance it was cancerous. “Well,” Balog says, “I ended up with the 2%.” Chemotherapy cleared up...