Mission & History

SCA’s mission is to coordinate and focus all available resources upon the needs of low-income Schuylkill County residents. As a result, this enables them to obtain adequate, affordable housing and to secure opportunities to achieve self-sufficiency.

SCA was initially incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in 1965. It was formed as a result of the combination of two community action grant programs operated by the City of Pottsville and Schuylkill County.

Previously, the agency went by the name “The Economic Opportunity Cabinet of Schuylkill County” until it officially changed its name to “Schuylkill Community Action” on July 1, 2000.

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Primary funding originated from the Federal Economic Opportunity Act of 1964. Legal authority was given for local governments to establish community action agencies. This Act was a major part of President Johnson’s “War on Poverty.”

The Economic Opportunity Act was the first major legislation that required active citizen participation in planning and implementing federally funded programs at the local level.

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President Lyndon Johnson signing the Federal Opportunity Act of 1964.

In 1974, Congress amended the Economic Opportunity Act, creating the Community Services Administration. Implementation of CSA activities and monitoring was conducted through ten regional offices.

The Community Services Administration also funded State Economic Opportunity Offices. Governors designated offices in each state to mobilize resources at the state level to assist community action agencies.

In 1981, federal legislation known as the Omnibus Reconciliation Act repealed most of the Economic Opportunity Act. The Community Services Administration was eliminated as a separate federal agency. The Omnibus Reconciliation Act, Subtitle B, Section 671, established the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG).

Funds provided to community action agencies through CSBG were now channeled through the states instead of coming directly from the federal government.

The Federal Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Community Services now administers the CSBG Program. In Pennsylvania, the Department of Community & Economic Development, Office of Community Services receives the block grant funds. Afterwards, the funds are distributed by formula to community action agencies.

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Schuylkill Community Action is currently the primary organization for addressing the needs of low-income residents within the county. Currently, the Community Services Block Grant Program is used as SCA’s core funding source. Those funds are employed to leverage a wide range of federal, state, local and private resources.

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SCA is an Equal Opportunity Provider and Employer.

We are firmly committed to the provision of assistance regardless of race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, military status, sexual orientation, or marital/family status.