It’s great every year to have access to the Mayor and hear his opinion on issues that are important to us. It was uplifting to hear the City has a stable budget, but it was important to open the dialogue about the decrease in funding for summer job opportunities for youth through federal budget cuts.

The Mayor also addressed federal budget cuts to the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds, a topic that is close to my heart.  This funding works to strengthen communities through eliminating blight, transforming vacant properties, building affordable housing, providing foreclosure prevention counseling and other community economic development initiatives. These funds are important to individuals, communities, and the entire city.

The Mayor also spoke about the Serve Philadelphia campaign aimed to set up individuals with service options. This is a great way to connect people with all different ways they can help.  You can tutor, help the elderly, deliver food to those who are ill, or whatever fits you best. Check out the website to find a volunteer option: http://volunteer.phila.gov/#s.

Submitted by Michelle Lewis who is Public Relations Specialist for the Office of Housing and Community Development, City of Philadelphia