CMCA’s mission is to empower individuals and families to achieve self-reliance.
Board Approved September, 2014

Central Missouri Community Action is part of a national network of Community Action agencies founded in 1964. Our network is dedicated to eradicating the causes and conditions of poverty. We are connected by our commitment to the 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.

The motto we use to summarize this Promise is “Helping People. Changing Lives.”

While this national network serves as the backdrop for the work we do and a common core set of programs generally characterize the work that we do, each Community Action agency is autonomous. Our intention is to meet the unique characteristics of the communities in which we operate by taking advantage of the unique opportunities that are present. In central Missouri we span a continuum of very rural to very metropolitan communities with a wealth of resources, multiple opportunities for higher education, and generally low unemployment. Yet still individuals and families struggle to meet their basic needs and to thrive. It is this dynamic that led the CMCA Board of Directors to adopt our mission statement.

CMCA’s mission is to empower individuals and families to achieve self-reliance.

Each of the words in our mission statement was carefully considered. Empowerment is a powerful word that we debated at length. Can one really empower another or is success more of an intrinsic characteristic regardless of external factors? The causes and conditions of poverty differ for everyone who struggles. We determined however that it is possible to establish a framework of support, guidance, and resources that can empower an individual when they are ready to embrace it. CMCA offers that framework. Poverty isn’t just an individual circumstance though. As valuable as individual and family development work is, communities empower people too. Education systems, employment opportunities, equality factors, diversity, and environmental factors also determine our fate. To this end, CMCA is committed to engaging communities to tip all of these variables in favor of opportunity, economic stability, and empowerment.