Originally posted in the Aroostook County Action Program Newsletter

UPDATE: The Statewide Report and the Aroostook County Report have both been released since this post was written. You can find both >>> HERE <<<

Maine Community Action Partnership (MeCAP) and Maine’s ten Community Action Agencies will release a first-of-its-kind Statewide Community Needs Assessment this Wednesday in Augusta. The press conference, set for 9:30 a.m. on February 26, will take place in the courtyard between the Statehouse and the Cross Office Building. At the same time the statewide release occurs, ACAP will release the needs assessment specific to Aroostook County.

The Community Needs Assessment is a systematic data-driven report that takes a closer look into the behaviors and needs of the residents of Maine. It outlines the top issues facing families and individuals both statewide and in each of the specific regions served by CAP Agencies. Maine is the first state in the nation to successfully complete a statewide community needs assessment and MeCAP is eager to share the findings as community action agencies across the state prepare for the future. 

The broad purpose of Maine’s Community Action Programs is to eliminate the causes and conditions of poverty. This newly released report describes the fundamental economic challenges facing Mainers. For the first time in MeCAP history, the data and interviews provide a good comparative look at these challenges across the state and up-close issues by region.

The assessment was conducted by MeCAP, in partnership with Crescendo Consulting Group. The 357 page report includes a broad overview of MeCAP and Maine’s ten community action agencies, describes the approaches and methodology used in the report, and identifies themes and high-level action areas. The report prioritizes recommendations for the state as a whole and each individual region. After completing a needs prioritization process, the report identifies the five top statewide needs as:
1.      Safe, affordable housing
2.      Affordable, quality childcare
3.      Ending the cycle of generational poverty
4.      Holistic person-centered health care
5.      Transportation

The Statewide assessment, as well as a ACAP Agency specific report, can be found on the ACAP Website.

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