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Capstone Community Action Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Economic Development, Family Services, Human Service Organizations, Human Services, Microfinance, Rural Economic Development

Mission: Capstone community action provides comprehensive services to help people achieve economic well-being with dignity and develops partnerships to strengthen vermont communities. Our commitment is: to alleviate the suffering caused by poverty, to work with individuals and families to move out of poverty, and to advocate for economic justice for all vermonters.

Programs: Early childhood and family developmentcapstone head start and early head start programs prepare over 300 young children for future success in school and in life through the oepration of licensed child care centers, through partnerships with local schools and provision of services to families in their homes. In addition to early childhood education, the agency provides parent education, parent leadership opportunities, male involvement activities, health, dental and nutrition services, disability services, mental health services, and resource and referral for other needed social services. Family literacy programming, partially funded through teen parent education, and private grants, is provided in the home and on-site at the agency's brook street school learning together center.

family and community support servicesfamily and community support services (fcss) provide immediate assistance to people in need of food, housing, utilities, and home heating fuel. Offices are located in barre, bradford, morrisville, randolph and waitsfield. Staff members are trained to help people articulate and prioritize their needs, identify opportunities for resources and services, and make referrals to state agencies and other community-based programs (including other programs within the agency). Capstone's food shelf in barre is the largest in central vermont, serving over 5,000 individuals. In addition to food shelves, low-income housing counseling, and fuel and utility assistance, fscc also houses the agency's supervised visitation and exchange services for non-custodial parents.

weatherizationcapstone's weatherization team conducts home energy audits for income eligible central vermont households. The weatherization team and partnering contractors follow up with cost savings measures such as added insulation, draft reduction, heating system efficiency improvements, installation of energy efficient lighting, hot water heater replacement or insulation, and more. In addition, this program offers emergency heating system replacemnts or repairs to ensure proper safety and functioning of home heating systems. 3e thermal (formerly vermont fuel efficiency partnership) continues to work with owners of multi-unit affordable housing to improve the energy efficiency, comfort and safety of those occupying their rental units.

housingcapstone provides nine affordable housing units in two buildings (hud section 8) in randolph, vermont called prospect forest homes. This group of funds holds the property, plant and equipment used to provide these housing units. Community economic developmentthe agency's micro business development program assists low to moderate income vermonters interested in improving their economic outlook through self-employment. The agency offers comprehensive trainings in business basics. Individualized counseling is provided to participants in areas of business plan development, product development, marketing, finance, managing employess, and much more. Tangible assets is the agency's matched savings and financial literacy program. After completing a comprehensive financial literacy curriculum, vermonters begin accruing some of their earned income in savings accounts where their efforts are matched by $2 for every $1 deposited, accruing assets for post-secondary education, business development, or home ownership. The agency's child care food program (ccfp) works with care providers to provide healthy, nutritious meals and snacks to the children in their care. We help approved providers access ccfp meal and snack reimbursements through the us department of agriculture. Workforce developmentcapstone, in partnership with the vermont food bank, established a community kitchen academy to train unemployed/underemployed vermonters for careers in the food services sector. Students complete a rigorous 12-week course of book learning, practical skills development, menu planning, recipe development, and employment readiness. Students achieve servsafe certification, an essential industry credential, and many receive up to nine college credits through the community college of vermont. This past year, 27 students graduated from the community kitchen academy and 96% of cka graduates were placed successfully in employment. Cka student prepared the equivalent of 34,855 meals to be distributed through capstone's food shelf. Capstone transportation projectthe capstone transportation project, a statewide partnership with the vermont department for children and families and vocational rehabilitation, assists individuals purchasing quality cars and making car repairs by helping them identify their vehicle needs and financial capacity. Participants receive educational information and guidance on credit issues, finding and test driving cars, and maintenance issues. Capstone transportation project staff offers comprehensive review of repair estimates and often helps consumers prioritize repairs to better suit their finances.

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