In the early 1960’s, a group of citizens representing all strata of society came together to form a nonprofit corporation for the purpose of providing services to better the lives of people in their community. Their shared belief was that the community could best serve its own citizens.
In 1964, President Johnson signed into law the Economic Opportunity Act. The overall purpose of the statute was to eliminate the causes and results of poverty in the United States. Under the Act, a federal Office of Economic Opportunity was established, state Economic Opportunity offices were formed, and new community-based organizations called Community Action Agencies evolved.
West Central History
In July of 1965, West Central Missouri Rural Development Corporation was designated by the Office of Economic Opportunity as a Community Action Agency (CAA) pursuant to enactment of the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964.
In 1990, the decision was made by the Board of Directors to change the agency’s name from West Central Missouri Rural Development Corporation to include the Community Action designation to more closely identify with the state and national Community Action image and goals. Today, the Agency is known as West Central Missouri Community Action Agency.
It is impossible to count the number of lives that have been touched by Community Action. Over the years, West Central has administered a host of programs/services and partnered with West Central Missouri organizations and leaders to improve our communities. Today, West Central offers services in the areas of: Community Development, Community Empowerment, Early Childhood Education, Emergency Assistance, Employment and Training, Energy Assistance, Energy Conservation, Family Support, Family Self-Sufficiency, Home ownership, Housing Assistance, Housing / Debt Counseling, Nutrition, and Weatherization.