Rising to the COVID-19 Challenge: Responses from NYS Community Action Agencies

Rising to the COVID-19 Challenge: Responses from NYS Community Action Agencies

Click here to view the report.

As this report will demonstrate, CAAs continued to operate during the worst of the pandemic, stepped up, never faltered, and met the needs of their communities with compassion, skill, and grace. This intense and seemingly never-ending work took its toll on direct service workers who could see the stress and unease in their customers’ faces, which often mirrored their own anxieties. Managers and Directors had to navigate ever-changing and contradictory state and federal guidelines and rules.

But, with crisis comes opportunity, and CAAs took advantage. They streamlined customer intake processes to make it easier and less burdensome.They designed and developed new methods to continue to engage customers, such as through remote classrooms and support groups, even offering unique prescription and grocery pick-up services. They augmented existing partnerships and developed new coalitions to deliver food, conduct outreach, and provide crucial support to families with low-income disproportionately affected by the pandemic. They made changes to their facilities and offices to ensure the safety of staff and customers. Many of these changes will continue into our “new normal.” But one thing will always remain: CAAs will search for these in-person connections with their customers and partners to build trusting and impactful relationships.

We at NYSCAA are incredibly proud of our network’s willingness to embrace change in the face of adversity and admire the nimble dance agencies made to ensure the operational policies and procedures and the service delivery changes implemented not only protected their employees and customers but also served clients well during the challenging weeks and months, lasting into years. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to highlight all of NY CAAs in this report. Community Action Agencies have shined during the pandemic, and we want to ensure those efforts are recognized in this report.


Click here to view the report.

Annual Conference


NYSCAA & NYSWDA's Annual Professional Development Conference

The New York State Community Action Association (NYSCAA) and the New York State Weatherization Directors Association (NYSWDA) would like to thank all who attended and supported our 2022 annual conference in Rochester, New York!

2023 Annual Conference

NYSCAA and NYSWDA's annual conference will return in 2023. Keep a look out for information about the dates, location, and agenda coming soon!

Want to get involved? For information about sponsorship packages, session call for proposals, and the Community Action Awards, email Charles Barbay.

RPIC Regional Convening

RPIC Region II Regional Convening

The Regional Convening, held on February 15, 2022, brought together representatives from Community Action Agencies in Region II. Participants gathered to learn about Human Capacity & Community Transformation (HCCT) initiatives in Region II. We were excited to come together around these innovative initiatives to connect, learn, collaborate, and identify opportunities for replication and capacity building.

The highlighted initiatives from Region II:

New York

  • Action for a Better Community, Inc.: Bridges to Success
  • Chautauqua Opportunities, Inc.: Chautauqua Opportunities for Development, Inc. (CODI)
  • Connecting Communities in Action: Fatherhood Connection Pilot
  • PathStone Corporation: Employment Focused Services

New Jersey

  • United Community Corporation: Newark Hope Villages
  • New Jersey Association on Correction (NJAC): Fatherhood Program

Puerto Rico

  • Acción Social de Puerto Rico, Inc. (ASPRI): Traditional and Modern Agriculture Project

The initiatives are also available on the National Community Action Partnership's (NCAP) showcase webpage, as part of NCAP's new platform to shine light on Community Action success stories to inspire others. You can access resources to strengthen services, build community outcomes, and create family and community change in your local area.

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