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At Sarah Heinz House, we have been providing a safe haven for the youth of Pittsburgh for over twelve decades. We are a diverse and unique mix of individuals who are passionate about our mission, vision, and values.


Our programs are designed to inspire children and keep them engaged, interested, and active. We are a non-profit organization that believes every child, regardless of their background, should have the opportunity to reach their full potential.


Our Vision

To provide best in class services for the communities we serve that assures success is within reach of every person who enters our doors, with all youth members on track to graduate from high school with a plan for their individualized success, demonstrating good character and understanding the value of living a healthy lifestyle.


Our Guiding Principles

Sarah Heinz House Association puts young people first. We prioritize their safety and elevate their voices in a relentless pursuit of our mission in everything, every way, every day. Out impact is amplified when we work collaboratively with others, guided by our core beliefs and shared values and principles.


  • Excellence: We strive to be leaders in youth development. We take a professional approach to our work, setting high standards and investing in the success of our people.   

  • Belonging: We create diverse, inclusive environments where every young person, caregiver, staff member, board member and volunteer is valued, respected and has a voice. We embrace diversity, celebrate differences, and welcome all members of our community who want to be part of the SHH ecosystem.

  • Continuous Improvement: We have a relentless focus on progress. We make data-informed decisions and embrace learning and innovation to increase our impact. We make the change we want to see in the world through acts of service for others and seeking to improve ourselves first.

  • Accountability: We act in ways that advance the impact and reputation of the entire Sarah Heinz House. We know that honesty, trustworthiness, and caring for others are the foundations upon which a good life is built, and we aim to instill these in youth.

  • Collective Impact: We collaborate eagerly for the collective good. We help each other get better. We grant agency and responsibility to our youth so that they can realize their full potential and find happiness.




With a focus on character, service, and leadership, Sarah Heinz House provides enriching programs where kids learn to make healthy choices while participating in fun, challenging activities. Our mission is to empower all youth, especially those who need us most, to laugh, learn and lead.


A caring staff and dedicated volunteers give kids the encouragement to explore new interests, develop social skills and dream big.






In 1901, Howard Heinz, the son of prominent businessman H.J. Heinz, started a small boys club on Pittsburgh’s North Side called the Covode House, which would later become Sarah Heinz House. The Covode House was a part of the settlement house movement. Howard’s passion for helping young children was inspired while he was a college student at Yale and saw the tough life of boys on the streets of New Haven, Connecticut.


The Covode House provided recreational and social activities for boys who were the sons of newly arrived immigrants to Pittsburgh. Girls were later admitted in 1903, making the club the first of its kind to include boys and girls.



By 1913, the club had become so successful that it outgrew its space. A new building was constructed and named in memory of Howard’s mother, Sarah. The building still stands today at our current location and features a brick and stone exterior with stained glass windows depicting the concepts of character and virtue.



To offer urban children a camping experience Heinz House Camp was established on approximately 115 acres located in Ellwood City, PA, along the Slippery Rock Creek. The Camp offers everything imaginable for a summer of fun and adventure. Plunge into the creek, high ropes course, relax on an overnight or day hike, and so much more!


In the 1930’s, Sarah Heinz House became one of the first members the national Boys and Girls Clubs of America, an affiliation which continues.



Over the decades, the need for additional space grew. Construction began on an environmentally green-certified structure connected to the original building. In 2007, the new building was completed featuring a state-of-the art gymnasium and swimming pool as well as a dance studio and fitness center. Today, the 75,000 square feet structure serves more than 1,000 youth each year through us after school and summer programs.



Sarah Heinz House is returning to its roots as a focal point for community as it was in the settlement house movement, while focusing on its core values and continued mission to empower all youth to laugh, learn, and lead!


"It's our dreams that motivate us. It's our passion that sets us apart."

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