Mission and Community Action Promise

CMCA’s mission is to build relationships to empower people, strengthen resilience, and improve quality of life for all members of the community.

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.


CMCA envisions communities without 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 shares a common core set of programs, each Community Action agency is autonomous.

Meeting the unique characteristics of the communities that we serve.

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, individuals and families still struggle to meet their basic needs. It is this dynamic that led the CMCA Board of Directors to adopt our mission statement.

Each word 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. Education systems, employment opportunities, equality factors, diversity, and environmental factors all 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.