South Hills Interfaith Ministries announces new name, logo and plans - SHIM

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South Hills Interfaith Ministries announces new name, logo and plans

Pittsburgh, Pa. (Feb. 3, 2016) – Today, South Hills Interfaith Ministries announced a new name, logo, website and growth strategy, including plans for 2016 to adapt to the increasing need among South Hills residents. Last year, SHIM helped 4,000 South Hills residents take one step closer to self-sufficiency. This year, they hope to reach even more community members in need.

“SHIM has been providing food, clothing and services to people in need in Pittsburgh’s southern suburban neighborhoods for nearly 50 years,” said The Rev. Kris McInnes, priest-in-charge, St. David’s Episcopal Church and Board Chair, SHIM. “Faced with unprecedented new levels of suburban poverty, SHIM is expanding its work to include more neighbors helping more neighbors in need.”

Suburban poverty is on the rise, increasing nearly five times faster than in urban areas. In the South Hills alone, 20 percent of families make under $35,000 a year, while the number of children eligible to receive free or reduced lunch has increased every year since 2010.

“Hidden in the shadows of our beautiful community is a growing number of people who need help making ends meet,” said Mary Phan-Gruber, executive director, Jefferson Regional Foundation. “These folks, our neighbors, often struggle quietly and may not know there’s a place to turn for resources and guidance.”

Over the course of more than a year, starting with a feasibility study, the SHIM Board of Directors, staff, clients, volunteers and members of the community have analyzed the organization and community needs and developed a strategic plan for SHIM’s future.

“We estimate there are around 9,000 people struggling financially in the neighborhoods we serve. Which means there are potentially 5,000 people in SHIM’s service area who we aren’t serving. These are people with unmet needs who could be fighting an uphill battle each day to get by,” said The Rev. McInnes. “This eye-opening realization requires a seismic shift in the way SHIM operates in order to double our impact.”

Today, South Hills Interfaith Ministries will officially become South Hills Interfaith Movement. With this change, SHIM hopes to inspire forward-thinking and action, while remaining committed to serving the South Hills and the involvement and support of its Interfaith partners.

“South Hills Interfaith Movement is very much rooted in the SHIM that has served our community for nearly 50 years,” said James Guffey, executive director, SHIM. “It’s an evolution of who we are, and a recognition of the role our community plays in our critical work every day –as volunteers, as donors, as activists – on behalf of our neighbors right here in the South Hills who need us most.”

In addition to the change in name, SHIM has released a new logo and website, and announced several new programs and developments for 2016, including a new garden, volunteer opportunities, a food pantry in Baldwin and an expansion of its clothing room.

“We hope all of you are inspired to help us help our neighbors,” said Nancy Murray, president, The Arc of Greater Pittsburgh at ACHIEVA and board member, SHIM. “There is an opportunity for everyone to get involved at SHIM and help us make the South Hills the best it can be for our entire community.”

Those interested in joining SHIM can begin by taking part in the organization’s annual Sack Hunger Campaign, which kicked off today. Currently, it takes more than $300,000 a year to operate SHIM’s two food pantries. Beginning now through the end of March, SHIM hopes to raise $100,000 in donations toward food pantry operations, along with collecting food to stock the pantry shelves. To participate, volunteers are encouraged to host a food or donation drive, drop off pantry items to SHIM, or donate on-line  at SHIM’s new website,

South Hills Interfaith Movement (SHIM) is a human services organization dedicated to improving the lives of people in need across the South Hills. This includes working to reduce the devastating effects of suburban poverty among the working poor, unemployed, families, single parents, senior citizens, women, and the high concentration of refugee families in its service area. SHIM works to identify the most critical needs across the South Hills, then develops and implements effective solutions. SHIM aims to empower individuals and families to achieve stability and self-sufficiency by offering short-term help with basic needs (food, clothing, utilities) and longer-term support (employment, financial planning, youth programs, family support) to help people build and sustain promising futures.


Abby Mathieu
412-709-6149 (Office)
304-281-8097 (Mobile)

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