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Young Volunteers

What is Community Action?

America was built on the promise that every family should have an opportunity for success. Yet, today’s uneven economy has put a good quality of life out of reach for too many Americans.

In the United States and its territories, Community Action Agencies (CAA) are local private and public non-profit organizations that carry out the Community Action Program (CAP), which was founded by the 1964 Economic Opportunity Act to fight poverty by empowering the poor as part of the War on Poverty.  CAAs are intended to promote self-sufficiency, and they depend heavily on volunteer work, especially from the low-income community. Each CAA is governed by a board of directors consisting of at least one-third low-income community members, one-third public officials, and up to one-third private sector leaders. This board structure is defined by federal statute and is known as a tripartite board.

There are currently over 1,000 CAAs, engaged in a broad range of activities; typical activities include promoting citizen participation, providing utility bill assistance and home weatherization for low-income individuals, administration of Head Start pre-school programs, job training, operating food pantries, and coordinating community initiatives

Promise of Community Action

Community Action changes people’s lives, embodies the spirit of hope, improves communities, and makes America a better place to live.  We care about the entire community, and we are dedicated to helping people help themselves and each other.

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