The Pittsburgh Community Works Together to find Common Ground through the Arts


Pittsburgh, PA – After a contentious election year, America could be seen as divided…or in a massive transition. In order to build a more inclusive community like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. envisioned, we need tools, meaningful dialogue, and new pathways to connect, empathize, and move forward together. Through Union Project’s monthly Creative Conversation Series, community members have been working together to share resources and dialogue throughout 2016. Community leaders will showcase some of these techniques and results during Union Project’s 15th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Day Celebration on Monday, January 16 from 2:00 to 7:00pm.

This year’s event will help participants to discover new perspectives, learn new methods to express themselves, and take action towards building a more inclusive community. Through a variety of creative and interactive activities lead by Aerion Abney, Jay Oriola, Michelle King, Jonathan Reyes, and others, we will explore different ways to speak out on the current state of America and community in words, poetry, and art.

At past events, participants have connected with people from different races, economic backgrounds, generations, and sectors. I learned how different members of our community were from myself, which allows me to empathize and connect with them better.” A participant responded after the event last year, Through attending this event, I learned the very tip of how complex an issue of community love and equity really is.”

The program has been crafted to create a safe space and foster inspiring, constructive dialogue. After the community-led workshops, participants will break bread together. Keeping with Union Project’s mission of bridging gaps between communities, the meal will feature Haudenosaunsee Confederacy cuisine presented by Conflict Kitchen. This event is free and for all ages.

For more information and details on the event, please visit our website.

The event is supported by Three Rivers Community Foundation and sponsored by Bridgeway Capital and JENDOCO Construction Corporation. Union Project is supported in part by the Allegheny Regional Asset District.

Union Project is a nonprofit organization that uses the arts to bridge gaps between communities. Employing an arts-as-social practice model and lead by core values of Inclusivity, Arts and Artists, Collaboration, and Joy, UP embraces a DIT (Do It Together) philosophy that empowers community members to solve problems, strengthen social ties, and build community wealth across race, economic status, age, and ability level.

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