Central Missouri Community Action Plans National Community Action Month Event to Mark 46 years of service to Central Missouri

Throughout May, the spirit of Community Action will come alive in Central Missouri as Central Missouri Community Action (CMCA) joins Community Action Agencies across the country to celebrate National Community Action Month.

National Community Action Month highlights Community Action Agencies’ work to establish economic security on the local level. CMCA’s plans for this special commemoration include a Cardboard Testimonial and a series of local events to engage community members in its programs.

A Cardboard Testimonial is scheduled to occur on the streets of Jefferson City on Friday, May 13, at 10 a.m. This event will turn traditional cardboard campaigns on its ear. Rather than asking for money or food, CMCA participants will create handwritten cardboard signs displaying words of hope and change. One participant plans to hold a sign that states, “Because of CMCA, I’m a community leader.”

“Our goal for our National Community Action Month celebration is to highlight the success that people in Central Missouri can have despite the real problems low-income people are facing,” said Darin Preis, Executive Director. “Especially during these challenging economic times, many people come to CMCA desperate for help because they have experienced so many hardships and have lost all hope. We show them that they can change their lives. Our programs are designed with a variety of situations and individuals in mind and we have a proven track record helping the most vulnerable people achieve economic security.”

The national office of the Community Action Partnership designates May as National Community Action Month to recognize Community Action Agencies’ work fighting poverty on the local level. Each year, Community Action Agencies help 20 million Americans escape poverty and achieve financial stability through programs such as Head Start, Weatherization, job training and placement, financial education, leadership development, housing, energy assistance and transportation.

“The economy is on everyone’s mind, people want to work, they want to be able to purchase a home and provide for their families. With the economy continuing to veer off course, these basic goals seem illusive and out of reach,” said Don Mathis, President and CEO of the Community Action Partnership. “That is why Community Action programs such as CMCA are needed now more than ever. National Community Action Month is our time to showcase our 47-year history helping people achieve economic security amid some of the most dismal circumstances.”

Central Missouri Community Action serves eight counties that comprise Central Missouri: Audrain, Boone, Callaway, Cole, Cooper, Howard, Moniteau and Osage counties. Their mission is to empower individuals and families to achieve self-reliance. By using a multi-faceted approach that is designed to address the continuum of human development, CMCA engages the community to assure that all people's basic needs are met, that there is capacity for lifelong learning, that personal and community assets are plentiful and that relationships exist across race and class lines.

Based in Washington, D.C., the Community Action Partnership provides training and other services to more than 1,000 Community Action Agencies across America that are helping low-income people and families improve their lives and embody the spirit of hope. For more information, visit www.communityactionpartnership.com.

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