Volunteers: A Call to Serve

Western Pennsylvania has a rich history of volunteerism. This documentary focuses on three local volunteers who give their time in three different ways: John Edward Hutchinson of the Greensburg VFD is believed to be the nations oldest-living volunteer fire chief; Former Pittsburgh Steeler Charlie Batch combines athletics and academics in a highly-successful program for at-risk youth; Linda Lafferty organizes Blessings in a Backpack in Wilkinsburg, providing food for students who might not have a meal waiting at home. 

Volunteers: A Call to Serve aired on Dec 16, 2016.

Program Type 
Documentary

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Series: Specials


First-time psychotic episodes are frightening, confusing and distressing for the entire family. Traditionally, teens and young adults experiencing first-episode psychosis (FEP) have been pulled out of school and/or society – only to begin a lifelong journey of spotty treatment, recurring episodes, and unfulfilled hopes of a career, happy marriage and children. But new research shows a significant success rate for people who receive proper, coordinated care after a first episode. This documentary shows who’s leading the FEP treatment movement, while families share personal stories of heartbreak, success and hope. The program also explores fascinating research on young adult brains that could lead to life-changing treatment of psychosis.

Visit the "Living with Mental Illness" website

Original airdate: Mar 30, 2017


Church has always been an important part of African-American Life. Western Pennsylvania is blessed with hundreds of black churches, all of which have their own stories to tell. We will visit five of these churches: from a church with ties to the underground railroad, to a church known for its music program, to a small church that refuses to give up. Each has its own history. 

Original airdate: Feb 23, 2017


The number of seniors is rising dramatically in the United States. But the number of medical professionals and family members who can provide care for these older adults is seriously lagging. WQED is proud to partner with Highmark Blue Cross, Blue Shield in this multi-platform project that includes a television documentary and digital-first content focusing on challenges for both the aging seniors and their caregivers.

Visit the Caregivers Website

Original airdate: Feb 14, 2017


As the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump nears, moderator Chris Moore sits down with a group of local voters who talk openly about who they voted for in the presidential election and why.  Voters explain the campaign messages that appealed to them, and discuss whether they feel post-election healing is a possibility.

Original airdate: Jan 19, 2017


For many Western Pennsylvanians, a day of cookie baking is as celebratory as the holidays. Families gather in kitchens throughout the region to mix dough, whip frostings and scatter sprinkles. It’s a time to embrace ethnic traditions and remember loved ones who handed down now creased and crumbling recipes. This holiday documentary features a pizzelle-making church group, gingerbread house artists, one of the area’s busiest cookie bakeries, a woman who donates her cookies as a goodwill gesture, and Pittsburgh’s popular cookie tour.

Original airdate: Dec 09, 2016


Chris Moore hosts the ninth and final episode in a series of Election 2016 discussion programs. In this episode, the panel explores the major issues of this election year, and the impact they have on Western Pennsylvania. The panel will also discuss the big contests in November, including the races for President, U.S. Senate, and Attorney General.

Original airdate: Oct 28, 2016

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