July 2016 Newsletter

July 4th
In This Issue
Resource Directory FAQ's

In developing this online tool, we've come across some frequently asked questions: 

Why is this a valuable tool for my organization?
The rural and geographically separated nature of Tioga County acts as an information barrier. If we can all find information more readily, residents will be more aware and have easier access to services that could potentially better their quality of life. Organizations will benefit by being able to search and identify others in the county who could be potential collaborators for a projects.

How is this different from other directories?
This directory is specific to Tioga County and highlights local organizations' volunteer opportunities, so potential volunteers can focus their search locally.
**The Partnership Resource Directory is ready for your submissions! Apply here.

**Directors/ Administrators:
This directory has received 4000 hits to date. Get a "Resource Directory" button to access this easily from your own website!
Contact us at 570-723-0520 or email skelley@tiogapartnership.org to
 learn more!

Quick Links...


     We hope you enjoyed your Fourth Of July!
In this issue, we tell about our Fit For Life team's collaboration with Northern Tioga Summer Feeding Program; a combined program that offers free nutritional support and summer physical activity to local kids. Don't forget to check out our online calendar for upcoming events and learn more about the user-friendly reports written from the results of the County-wide "Building a Better Community" Survey. Thanks for following us here! Have a fabulous July, Tioga County!
Collaboration is Food for Life

     The Partnership's Fit For Life Recreation Staff, Olivia Johnson, Crystal Deitrick, Allie Rudy, Delaney Smith, Katie Straniere, and Nicki Watson make their way to three Northern Tioga County locations between 11am and 2:30pm every weekday throughout the summer months. They greet kids who come out for the day with outside games, crafts, and educational workshops provided by various community partners. All of that activity makes for hungry kids and the Northern Tioga Summer Feeding Program is there to save the day. Monday through Friday, June 6th through August 12th, meals and snacks are served by the feeding program at Clark Wood Elementary in Elkland, at the Knoxville Community Center, and at the Valley Christian Center in Westfield. These are "open sites" so kids 18 and under (or those still in school) can just show up, sign in, and enjoy the day complete with meals and snacks!


This awesome summer food program is organized by Northern Tioga School District's Food Service Director, Joann Banik. Approximately five trained volunteers work at each site, each day. Volunteers come from area churches and Clark Wood Elementary school personnel help out too. The Partnership's Fit For Life Staff assist with transporting food and food service when needed. Funding for the Northern Tioga Summer Feeding Program comes from U.S. Dept of Agriculture and seeks to encourage positive social interaction between all area children while providing nutritional support for those in need. 


This program is making a big impact. In the first two weeks of the program, volunteers had already served 135 meals. This is a sign that a necessary and beneficial service is being provided. We are proud to collaborate with Northern Tioga Summer Feeding Program through our Fit for Life program as part of the Valley Youth Initiative. Food Program administrators have reported that, "[the Partnership's] Fit For Life recreation program has greatly impacted attendance for meals. Kids come for lunch and stay for activities and snack." This is an inspiring example of collaboration and we look forward to collaborating with Northern Tioga Summer Feeding Program into the future and for as long as there is need. Thank you to all of the volunteers, staff, and administrators who make this available to our Tioga County kids!

County-wide Survey Findings Shared

    On June 15th, Data Analysts, Dr. Nicolle Mayo and Dr. Karri Verno presented significant findings from the "Building a Better Community" County-wide Survey at the Tioga County Partnership's Board of Directors Meeting at the W.M. Tokishi Building, in Wellsboro. Approximately twenty community members and county leaders attended to see the presentation. 

Given the large volume of data produced by this survey, Dr. Mayo began by explaining that the presentation would tackle the "Community Resources" portion of the survey that asked respondents how well selected topics met their needs. 

For presentation purposes, this first portion of the survey would be broken down into three parts that both analysts agreed were areas of most concern to survey participants and where the most significant findings emerged. The three community resources categories highlighted were: Education, Safety/Law Enforcement, and Governance. In presenting the quantitative survey results, Dr. Verno explained that each of these three topics had two common predictors; how "at home" people feel in Tioga County, and how interested they are in their community. She explained that survey participants responded more favorably to questions regarding education needs, safety/law enforcement needs, and governance needs if they did indeed feel more "at home" and more "interested" in their community. 
     For the second half of the presentation Dr. Mayo discussed the findings of the open-ended question responses on the same three topics. A slide of Dr. Mayo's piece of the presentation best summarizes her findings: 

School Governance and the Education System: responses relayed a need for further considering community opinions, fiscal responsibility, and expansions in educational opportunities.

Law Enforcement and Safety: responses relayed a need for more police availability, accessibility, follow-through, and substance use/crime intervention and prevention to increase safety

Local and County Governance: responses relayed a need for more transparency, proactivity, fiscal responsibility, and better representation of community needs.

Many more findings are to come from this data as the Measurements and Outcomes workgroup disseminates the information that both Dr. Mayo and Dr. Verno are diligently crafting into user-friendly mini-reports. Stay tuned! To view the latest mini-reports and to learn more  visit the Measurements & Outcomes Workgroup webpage at www.tiogapartnership.org.
2016 Walking Forum; a Family-Friendly Event
by Caleb Williams
The Tioga County Countryside Council will hold the 2016 Walking Forum at Colton Point State Park Pavilion #1 on July 16, 2016 from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM.  This will be a free, family oriented event.  The 2016 Forum's theme will be "Earth - A New Wild," as part of the continuing series of community engagement events focusing on topics of Environment, Agriculture and Sustainability. This Walking Forum is a follow-up of the 2016 Countyside Film Series that was held at the Victoria Theater in Blossburg from January to May of this year. The Film Series screened the PBS Special, "Earth - A New Wild," whose theme was how humanity is part of, not separate from, nature. This Walking Forum will continue the exploration of this theme by walking and participating in facilitated conversations to try to understand how we are integral to our local natural world, specifically the Forest, and how we as Forest Dwellers can better integrate our quality of life and sustenance with the natural processes of the land.
Do you know of someone who would enjoy this news, like to learn more about our projects, or learn about volunteering opportunities and/or internships?


Thank you for your support and community spirit!

Sue Sticklin
Tioga County Partnership for Community Health