Giant Eagle, Pittsburgh Food Bank to be honored for partnership, outreach efforts

Laura Wiens (above), executive director of Pittsburghers for Public Transit, will deliver the keynote address at Mon Valley Initiative’s 17th annual Employer Appreciation Breakfast on July 26. (Photo courtesy Pittsburghers for Public Transit)


One of Pittsburgh’s largest private employers will be honored this month for its efforts to help unemployed people find jobs.

At its 17th annual Employer Appreciation Breakfast, Mon Valley Initiative will present representatives of Giant Eagle with its “Employer-Partner of the Year” award for 2019.

Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank also will be honored as MVI’s “Community Partner of the Year” for 2019.

The event will be held at 9 a.m. July 26 at Rankin Christian Center. To RSVP or get more information, contact Deborah Mattie at 412-464-4000, or email dmattie@monvalleyinitiative.com.

Laura Wiens, executive director of Pittsburghers for Public Transit, will deliver a keynote address on the economic impact of extending the Martin Luther King Jr. East Busway to McKeesport and Monroeville.

Based in Homestead and Charleroi, Mon Valley Initiative provides free career and financial coaching for people who are unemployed or under-employed, said Tracey R. Reaves, who directs the agency’s workforce and business development program. Last year, nearly 300 people enrolled in the program, which helps participants identify career goals, prepare a resume, practice their job interview skills and budget for future expenses, Reaves said.

More than 60 percent of the people who enrolled in the program over the past 12 months have obtained employment, she said. Many of the participants overcame serious personal or professional challenges, Reaves said.

One of the people who has successfully completed the program also will be honored during the July 26 event, she said.

“It’s a privilege for us to partner with companies such as Giant Eagle,” Reaves said. “Besides providing jobs directly to the people we serve, they also provide feedback, advice and helpful suggestions that make our programs more useful to employers throughout Southwestern Pennsylvania.”

The Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank is being honored for its efforts to advocate for the unemployed, senior citizens and other people who face food insecurity in the region, Reaves said.

“When we’re helping someone who’s unemployed and in need of supportive services, we can always rely on Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank for help,” she said.

Founded in 1988, Mon Valley Initiative is a regional community development corporation that provides community outreach and real estate development, counseling for first-time homebuyers, and career and financial coaching in Allegheny, Washington and Westmoreland counties. For more information, visit www.monvalleyinitiative.com.