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Community Action Agencies

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Community Action Agencies (CAA) are local, private and public non-profit organizations that promote self-sufficiency and work to reduce the causes and conditions of poverty in the communities they serve. They help individuals and families who are considered low-income achieve the following goals:

  • Increase self-sufficiency
  • Improve living conditions
  • Promote ownership of and pride in their communities
  • Strengthen family and support systems

There are 22 designated CAAs in Indiana to serve income-eligible Hoosiers in all 92 counties across the state. To find the CAA serving your county, use the interactive map or select your county using the dropdown menu on the right.

CAAs offer a variety of programs that may include but are not limited to:

  • Employment and employment-readiness training
  • Food and nutrition assistance
  • Child development programs, including Head Start and center-based daycare
  • Individual and family self-sufficiency initiatives
  • Youth development
  • Fuel and energy assistance
  • Domestic violence prevention, counseling, and emergency assistance
  • Emergency assistance such as: temporary shelter, food, medical assistance, clothing, and conflict resolution
  • Affordable housing and homeownership opportunities
  • Assistance to individuals and families experiencing or at-risk of homelessness
  • Transportation assistance

The most commonly-used CAA programs include the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) - which provides utility benefits - and the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) - which increases a home’s energy efficiency. (make LIHEAP and WAP link to those pages on our site)

Community Action Agencies were founded as a part of the 1964 Economic Opportunity Act as part of the War on Poverty. 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.

CAAs’ main source of federal funding is the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG). CAAs use CSBG funds to support a variety of anti-poverty programs, including other federal and state-funded programs. Those programs vary widely among agencies, since CAAs plan and implement their programs based on the specific needs of their local communities. CSBG is NOT a program open to individuals and families for direct funding or assistance. Income-eligible residents can, however, apply for the programs offered by their county’s CAA.

Find Your Community Action Agency