Pet Connections

Charlie and Latasha Batch and The Best of the Batch Foundation

By Carla Mader

Charlie Batch, former Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback, is currently a color analyst and radio personality for The Steelers, CBC Pittsburgh, and WDVE Radio. Charlie, and his wife, Latasha founded the Best of the Batch Foundation in 1999. Latasha currently serves as the Executive Director of Best of the Batch Foundation.

The Best of the Batch Foundation serves 4,000 children in 9 Pennsylvania counties, with 12 programs for children aged K-12. Some of the after-school programs include mentoring, tutoring dance street cricket and also scholarships programs. 

The Foundation’s STEAM program allows children the opportunity to engage in creative thinking in ways that utilize their strengths- whether that be through coding, 3D printing, robotics, or music production. Girl Talk engages both middle school and high school girls in a mentoring program where young girls receive accurate information and advice to navigate the challenges of growing up. 

Homework help and individualized tutoring are offered to every child who attends, which has resulted in an increase in school attendance and homework submission in participants. Grub Time is an out-of-school time meal program, where all children receive a hot meal including a protein, vegetable, fruit, starch, and a healthy snack every day. Functioning as the only completely free clubhouse within a two-bus transfer of the community, the out of school time programming Best of the Batch offers reflects the wants and needs of the surrounding community. The Foundation also provides outreach services through multiple programs, including their back-to-school readiness program BatchPacks, holiday toy drive Batch A Toys, emergency response programming like the Comfort in a Basket initiative, and EITC, OSTC, Pre-K, and college scholarships. You can learn more about The Best of the Batch Foundation and ways you can help at www.batchfoundation.org.

Together, the Batches have a very good understanding of the Human-Animal Bond. The Batches are also very involved in animal welfare, and beside having adopted all of their past and present pets, and Charlie has served on the board of the Western PA Humane Society in the past. 

Charlie and Latasha were the Grand Marshalls of the  Panera Pup Walk event at The Waterfront for 12 years.  They are now the Grand Marshalls of PetConnection’s DogtoberFEST annual event at The Waterfront on October 1, 2022. DogtoberFEST is the largest pet adoption awareness event in Pittsburgh and now in its 12th year running.

Together, The Batches currently have 4, four-legged fur babies: Indya, Cairo, Pluto, and Snickers.  Indya is a Rottweiler, and he was adopted by the Batch’s at 6 years old, after being rescued found in a box. Cairo is a Beauceron and was rescued by a breeder after retiring as a show dog because of a bad staph infection in his neck, in which The Batch’s nursed him back to health.  Snickers, a male Sheba Inu who was also adopted, is 7 years old. Pluto, a Berna-Doodle rescued and 4 months old, is the Batches adorable newest member of the family!

Latasha says that she and Charlie really value pets and ”feels that it is very therapeutic to have dogs, as they give you a sense of love and affection and people need one to love,” and further states that, “I wish everyone would take the time to appreciate fur babies, and take them to adopt!” 

We are very pleased to feature Charlie, Latasha and their fur babies on our cover and at our DogtoberFEST event this fall!  The Batches have donned our cover twice before over the years! 

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