From the Desk of Paula McWilliams:

On behalf of our Board of Directors, my colleagues and the thousands of families we are privileged
to serve, I would like to thank you for your ongoing support of Heritage Community Initiatives. It is
largely due to individuals such as yourself that enables our organization to enter our fifth decade of
service still able to positively impact the socioeconomic mobility of thousands of people each day in
forty-nine (49) communities in Allegheny County. Our efforts, as you know, are both pragmatic and
measurable – providing unparalleled access to Transportation, Education and Nutrition.

The post pandemic world has changed the lives of who we serve and therefore Heritage Community
Initiatives must continue to be flexible to respond to the needs of those we serve in the light of a
significant increase in demand for our services. We are committed to maintaining the integrity of
our mission while nurturing growth and innovation to meet the demand – while doing so in a
fiscally responsible and sustainable fashion.

I respectfully ask that you take a moment to consider the hallmarks of our organization as we
conclude our fortieth anniversary year as well as a reminder of those individuals your support
allows us to serve.

For your consideration:

  • Heritage Community Initiatives is the only nonprofit in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania dedicated to directly addressing these three key constructs of socioeconomic mobility
  • A recent study showed that the economic and societal impact of Heritage results in over $33.3 million infused into the regional economy each year
  • In the last 5 years, the organization has doubled in growth
  • $.90 on every dollar generated is reinvested in programs
  • No full-time employee has an hourly wage less than $15 per hour
  • More than 17% of our Heritage teammates have been with us for over a decade, speaking to their commitment to our mission of service
  • Heritage invests in our team, with more than 8% of team members receiving internal promotions in the last nine (9) months
  • Over 1.6 million rides for only 25 cents on Heritage Community Transportation
  • 81 stops, connecting 17 underserved communities in the region
  • The only human services nonprofit in the Commonwealth designated as a provider of public transportation
  • More than 8,000 students served at Heritage 4 Kids Early Learning Center and HOST (Heritage Out of School Time)
  • We are the only program in our region to offer unapparelled access to Head Start, Early Head Start, Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts, scholarships and accept Child Care Works child care subsidy
  • In the only 4% of providers in Pennsylvania who receive both a STAR 4 and NAEYC accreditation
  • 90% of early learners meet or exceed benchmarks for early literacy, math and social- emotional development
  • Heritage Nutrition has grown from serving a few hundred meals per day to nearly 200,000 meals annually to at-risk youth and senior populations.

We are driven in all we do by who we serve –

  • 76% of transportation riders have household incomes under $20,000, and meet federal poverty guidelines
  • A majority (60%) of riders predominantly use our transit services to travel to and from their jobs
  • More than 85% of education families identify as a minority
  • Over 80% are single-female headed households
  • 100% of meals served address food security in our region

The needs of who we serve continues to rise. There are currently 89 infants and toddlers on the
Heritage Education Program waiting list. Demand for Heritage Nutrition’s largely scratch cooked
meals is outpacing capacity, requiring us to invest in a larger kitchen to address the need. Our
riders need affordable and reliable transportation more than ever. Enclosed please see how your
contribution of just $5 will make a measurable positive impact on the lives of thousands of
individuals, children and families in our region.


Paula G. McWilliams
President & CEO