All Coro participants engage in some form of learning through experience. For the NEXT Leaders South Pittsburgh the main source of experiential learning is a group project they are conducting for the benefit of South Pittsburgh communities. On March 6, 2014, the cohort hosted a “Project Opening” at St Paul AME Church in Beltzhoover. A  Project Opening is a Coro learning tool designed to generate lots of feedback on an early-stage project idea and build collaboration to support it. Over 70 people attended the event.

The NEXT Leaders describe their project in this way:

To strengthen South Pittsburgh leaders, both seasoned and emerging, we need to invigorate those leaders with ideas and encouragement. Showcasing successful and conceptual projects from all of the different South Pittsburgh neighborhoods will provide a way to share success and encourage collaboration. There will also be a keynote speaker to kick off the events of the day. A series of focused panel discussions will provide more hands-on learning for anyone looking to expand their skill sets. We hope that by bringing in all the South Pittsburgh communities that people can see what’s happening in their neighborhoods and find out ways to get involved. The event will also include local food vendors, kids’ activities, and entertainment for the community at large.

The Showcase: A One-Day Event Bringing Neighborhoods Together

There are four key components of the showcase

  • Keynote speaker: A TBA speaker ideally from South Pittsburgh to inspire and energize participants and urge them to commit to action in South Pittsburgh communities.
  • A showcase of South Pittsburgh organizations and projects: Different South Pittsburgh organizations displaying their programs, projects, resources, and opportunities to get involved. (science fair style).
  • Breakout educational sessions with subject matter experts: Smaller panel discussions/educational sessions where subject matter experts facilitate discussion on specific community development topics.
  • Activities and entertainment for the community at large: (TBA)

Who Will Be at the Showcase:

  • Existing South Pittsburgh neighborhood groups
  • Key non-South Pittsburgh neighborhood groups
  • Resources for community organizations (non-profits, government, etc)
  • Local food vendors/entertainment

The NEXT Leaders expect to hold the Community Showcase in late summer or early fall.  For more information, check them out on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/nextsouthpgh .