SHIM serves more than 1,000 families or over 4,000 individuals each year. The families we serve are all struggling financially. Over the last few years as the US economy has suffered, so-called Suburban Poverty has been on the rise across the country and in our communities. While urban areas continue to experience high concentrations of poverty, the rate of poverty is increasing most quickly in suburban areas, like the South Hills.
In Allegheny County, 171,660 people — 14.0% of the population — are food insecure (meaning they struggle to gain access to enough food or appropriate nutrition for a healthy and active life).
In SHIM’s service area, defined by the school districts below, as many as 12% of the population lives at or below the federal poverty level.
Upper St. Clair – 4.45%
Mt. Lebanon – 4.5%
Bethel Park – 5.84%
Baldwin-Whitehall – 8.58%
South Park – 9.73%
Keystone Oaks – 12.22%
Within SHIM’s service area, there are approximately 5,000 families living at or below the federal poverty level.
The South Hills of Pittsburgh is also home to a growing refugee population. Catholic Charities and Jewish Family and Children’s Service began resettling refugees in the Prospect Park neighborhood of Whitehall Borough over a decade ago. Since then there have been a large number of refugees resettled here including Bosnians, Meskhetian Turks, Iraqis, Afghanis, Burmese, Burundians, Bhutanese, Neapli, Sudanese, and Congolese. Prospect Park has also become home to immigrant families.