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The History of 
Community Action

In 1964, the poverty rate in the US was hovering around 19%. ​ During President Lyndon B. Johnson's State of the Union ​Address in January of 1965, he attacked the problem head on ​and officially declared "War on Poverty". Congress responded ​by passing the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 thereby creating the Office of Economic Opportunity to administer ​federal funds for use by states on anti-poverty fighting ​measures. The funds would be distributed to a network of ​Community Action Agencies (CAAs) - nonprofit private and ​public organizations established by the Economic ​Opportunity Act to fight America's War on Poverty.

Our History

There are approximately 1000 Community Action Agencies serving the poor in every state as well as Puerto Rico and the Trust Territories. First State CAA is proud to be a part of the Community Action Agency family and proud to be YOUR Community Action Agency. We have served Delaware for more than 50 years and will continue to serve the poor and disadvantaged as long as we are needed.


Around this same time, a group of concerned citizens in the Georgetown area formed the Sussex County Community Action Agency. The group applied for federal recognition of non-profit status and was incorporated on April 12, 1966 thus becoming Delaware's first and only federally recognized Community Action Agency in the State of Delaware.