BTC Center, Inc. is a non-profit community resource and operates as a 501(c)(3). Its projects include (i) a food pantry serving approximately 200 individuals and (ii) a community garden. The food pantry, under the leadership of Donna Taylor, works to reduce hunger and support healthy living. During the pandemic, it is critically needed as many families face recent job loss and anxieties about family sustenance.
The purpose of the garden called Planted in Homewood, serve to provide gardeners (of all ages) with access to fresh foods, exercise, knowledge of gardening, and tips on healthy food preparation. The garden, led by Aftyn Giles, Ashley Byrd, and Karla Byrd, has transformed a vacant lot into an urban green space, creating community pride. Eating locally produced food and having access to green space can significantly restore the well-being of a community. In 2019-2020, the garden harvested an assortment of greens, peas, garlic, tomatoes, eggplant, okra, mushrooms, carrots, beets, and herbs and met our goal to provide healthy organic food to families. Some of the vegetables were served to those attending the Baptist Temple church’s community Thanksgiving dinner in 2018 and 2019.
A new project of BTCC is to distribute safety tips and disposable masks to community residents. Our website is being updated to offer education on Covid-19 and how best to keep safe and cope with the changes required of all.
BTCC’s priority is to protect the public health and safety of the Homewood and broader Allegheny County community. BTCC serves individuals and families with varying incomes and psychosocial backgrounds, but most of its served individuals and families are low income and considered a minority, particularly of African American ancestry. All age groups are served. We hope that you will join us in being a resource for our community.