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Tompkins Community Action Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Mission: Tompkins community action, inc. (tcaction) "partners with low-income households and individuals as they develop to their full potential". Located in upstate new york's finger lakes region, tcaction has served the community for over 49 years, implementing programs that create stable support systems to help people to move out of poverty.

Programs: See schedule otompkins community action is a private, not-for profit charitable organization that had its grassroots beginnings in 1964. Originally tompkins county economic opportunity corporation or eoc, as it was known until our official corporate name change to tompkins community action in 1999, began as a local coalition of concerned community members who wanted to improve the lives of low income families in tompkins county. Formally incorporated in 1966, the agency became part of a national and state network of community action agencies. From a small not-for-profit human service agency, with a yearly budget of approximately $25,000 and a staff of 3. 5 employees in 1966 operating two programs, eoc transformed itself and has grown into tompkins community action, a large, multi-faceted community action agency implementing and integrating 25 programs that service low-income individuals, families and community collaborations. As one of tompkins county's larger employers, the agency currently has a staff of 102 people who assist yearly approximately 7,000 low-income individuals through a wide variety of programming. We enter this year with renewed commitment to our mission, vision, and strategies for ending cycles of poverty in tompkins county. Head start and early head start programs served 350 children and their families. Program delivery supported pregnant women, newborns and children up to 5 years old in both classrooms and families' homes. With 16 classrooms county wide, collaborations with child care providers and the ithaca school district serving as our delegate in 8 pre-k classrooms, children and families receive high quality developmentally appropriate education, individualization to enhance learning and community resources to prepare our children for a lifetime of learning. Implementing high scope curriculum, programming focuses on the five domains identified to meet school readiness goals that prepare our children for kindergarten. Children's math and science skills increased by 72% and language literacy skills by 75% this program year. Child social relations skills increased by 65%; shows a strong indicator for school readiness and transition success. Family services included monthly socialization activities, parent action groups, trainings, secondary education opportunities and seminars throughout the year. We served 85,277 breakfasts, lunches and snacks to children and families this year and expanded program activities linking active movement to healthy nutrition. The family home library provided 3,518 books and activities to families funded through the park foundation. Program funding from the us department of health & human services totaled $3,443,696 funding for programming ($2,319,558 wages and fringe benefits, $765,016 operations, $241,992 contracted services, $58,331 consumables). An additional $48,799 supported and expanded staff and parent education and training. Our primary school support program worked closely with parents and school officials to strengthen collaborative efforts on behalf of children transitioning to kindergarten in elementary schools. Advocates provided support for families at parent/teacher conferences, coordinated service delivery for children with special needs and supported positive communication between families and school system staff. The emergency food pantry distributed 5,721 boxes of nutritious food, personal hygiene products and household supplies to income eligible households. Our victory garden initiative provided over 9,000 vegetable seedlings to households with low incomes who participate in our programs. The family engagement team brings family service staff from all agency departments together to train, share best practices and support comprehensive service delivery tofamilies. In 2014, we provided housing choice voucher program rental assistance to over 1120 households as the local administrator for nys homes and community renewal. The total annual subsidy paid out to landlords was $6,675,470. 84 individuals participated in our family self sufficiency (fss) program, with 48 people earning escrow monies due to an increase in their earned income. As of march 2015, $68,796 of escrow monies was disbursed to graduating participants. Three families purchased homes as part of the home ownership program. As a partner of the solutions to end homelessness program of tompkins county, tcaction provided services to 75 households receiving rental assistance. Tcaction assisted 7 elderly and/or disabled individuals transition out of or to avoid entering a nursing home with rental subsidies under the nursing home transition and diversion program. Chartwell house provided affordable and safe permanent housing for 12 previously homeless men in recovery. Residents concentrate on housing stability, building life skills, maintaining employment and furthering education goals. Our supportive housing for families program assisted 14 young, homeless, pregnant or parenting families in achieving safe and stable affordable housing, with a focus on education/ged attainment, job preparation and parenting skills. Magnolia house, supportive housing for women in recovery experiencing homelessness, opened in 2014 serving 14 women, many with young children. Our building performance institute (trademarked) certified technicians performed energy audits, efficiency updgrades and resident education about low and no cost ways to save energy. This year, 45 low income households benefited from our weatherization assistance program. 13 families made energy improvements through assisted home performance with energy star, which provides income-eligible households a 50% subsidy for efficiency upgrades. Through ny state's new program, green jobs green new york, 39 more families at all income levels trusted tcaction staff to complete their home energy assessments. Collaborations with better housing for tompkins county continued as first time homebuyer or housing rehab program consumers received audits to evaluate energy saving opportunities and/or energy upgrades. This year 43 low-income households received cost-effective electric reduction measures through empower new york.

Community Stories

1 Story from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1 Heather K

Former Volunteer

Rating: 4

Since my experience with Tompkins Community Action was limited, I'm only giving four stars - but I was impressed with everything I saw! I interned as a member of a grant-writing team for four months, serving the Family Self-Sufficiency program in the Housing division. The program really impressed me. TCAction works as a partner with struggling families, not as a temporary provider. Their programs help families to get off of assistance in the long-term and become independent. They welcome and encourage input from those they serve. Overall, this organization seems very focused. They know who they serve and what the community's needs are, but they're also open to change. TCAction has been around for over 40 years, which shows it is an adaptable and effective non-profit.