Community Action Agencies (CAA) were created to help those in need, assist people with paying bills and expenses, provide grants and other emergency short term financial aid, assist individuals with finding jobs, and most importantly to promote self-sufficiency. A Community Action Agency is a local private and/or public non-profit organization that is partially funded by the federal government and that is part of the nationwide Community Action Program (CAP) network. This program was founded in 1964 to help provide assistance and fight poverty by empowering the poor in the United States. Currently, there are over 1,000 of these agencies located in all states and counties across the United States.
Most counties have an agency that provides assistance and access to various programs. They can also be a great resource to refer people to other programs as well.
CAA provide many services to struggling families. The overall objective is to help people overcome barriers and challenges that they may be facing. Case managers will help people regain self-sufficiency over the long term. Community Action Agencies provide numerous programs that offer a wide range of much needed resources and services to low-income people. For example, some local agencies:
Note that the exact programs and services offered by individual community action agencies will vary based upon funding and other criteria. However in general direct, short term emergency financial assistance may be offered (or referred too) while the family works towards long term self-sufficiency.
Most of the funds for the agencies come from the Community Service Block Grant. Thiswas created by the federal government and it also relies on donations. The Block Grant has provided the principal funding to these non-profit organizations. The CSBG funding is essential to keep Community Action Agency operations running and available to help the needy and poor.
Community Action Agencies are great resources to contact. Their primary mission is to help with the improvement of low income families and individuals, and to assist them with becoming fully self-sufficient. Case managers will assist those who are struggling through a difficult period in their life. Even if for some reason the agency can’t help you, they can be a great resource to provide you referrals or recommendations to other agencies or programs that can assist, such as credit card counselors, public assistance or others.
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