The Arthritis Foundation’s Supporting Kids with Arthritis program plans to launch a 2012 campaign to distribute backpacks filled with informative materials to the families of children with JA in western Pennsylvania in 2012. Each backpack contains educational materials and resources to help manage the impacts of the disease, and heat-therapy teddy bears to provide physical comfort and relief. Heat-therapy teddy bears radiate soothing warmth to reduce pain and inflammation in the joints, making doctor’s visits and waiting periods for IV infusions and injections more bearable.
CASA of Allegheny County, an organization working to comfort and assist abused and neglected children, is throwing a pregame Steelers tailgate party to help raise funds for its mission of relocating mistreated tots to a safe and permanent home. After nibbling on appetizers and paying for drinks with Monopoly money at the open bar, enlist notable Steelers players, including wide receiver Mike Wallace, to sign one piece of your football memorabilia during an exclusive autograph session. Although not included in the price of this Groupon, the Carnegie Science Center will provide parking ($7) for those arriving by car and open roof hatches for those arriving via the starship Enterprise.
CSCF’s Learn2Swim Program allows children and their families to wade into a heated pool in medically supervised swimming lessons that keep them active and provide a relaxed social outlet. CSCF ensures that the water stays a warm 84 degrees Fahrenheit during lessons with certified swim instructors, under the supervision of medical professionals. Warm towels, snacks, and drinking water await on dry land. Many families cannot afford swimsuits for their children to participate in the program, so CSCF hopes to provide free suits to remove this barrier to their children's participation.
The 42nd annual Mexican War Streets Society House & Garden Tour guides patrons through Victorian-style homes and gardens, raising funds to preserve the historic north-side neighborhood. Paired patrons stroll through the federally designated historic district, taking in late-19th-century architecture, commenting on flowering and waterfalling gardens, and ducking their top hats beneath doorframes. Character-filled homes open up to show their modern renovations and restorations of chandeliers, hardwood floors, fireplaces, and carved trim and crown molding. Guests can direct questions to knowledgeable domicile docents, stop in at an array of refreshment areas and local-art exhibits, and get advice from restoration specialists on their own historic renovation projects, such as repairing the stained glass in an antique doghouse.
RIF Pittsburgh annually gives 60,000 free books and motivational literacy activities to children in more than 100 schools, community centers, and public housing across the city. Increasing the number of books in low-income homes can directly affect how often children will read on their own or with their families, which helps strengthen their essential literacy skills. Through RIF Pittsburgh’s programs, students can select their own stories or books to take home to keep and peruse with their families, sparking their desire to read in a positive environment.
The YMCA Adventure Warrior Race gives kids and adults a chance to prove themselves against ropes courses, mud, water obstacles, and other unexpected mental and physical challenges—all while supporting a good cause. Amid the breathtaking views and tranquil waters of Lake Tris, runners maneuver around trees and carry heavy objects up the sometimes snow-covered Laurel Highlands mountains, climbing up to 1,000 feet as they go. Warriors aged 16 and older make a 4-mile circuit, whereas younger participants run age-appropriate distances of a half mile or a full mile. Trophies and the respect of all the woodland creatures are awarded to the top male and female runners, top male and female teams, and top co-ed team. According to the Daily American, funds raised from the race provide camp scholarships that allow kids to attend residential and day programs at the 263-acre YMCA Camp T. Frank Soles.