The how of BROC Community Action's existence goes back to 1964, when a notion called "community action" emerged from President Kennedy's Committee on Juvenile Delinquency and Youth Crime. President Kennedy was assassinated before efforts aimed at reducing poverty could be initiated, but President Johnson took up the challenge. He declared a national "War on Poverty" and named Peace Corps director Sergeant Shriver to head the planning effort. The President issued a "White House Message on Poverty to the Congress of the United States", proposing the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 and calling for "total victory" in America's war on poverty.
In May of 1965, Vermont became the first state in the union to have multi-county organizations driving a war on poverty in every town.
Today, BROC Community Action works to change conditions that either cause poverty or stand in the way of its elimination. BROC Community Action assists low-income Vermonters with basic needs, as well as helping them develop skills and resources for self-sufficiency through employment opportunities. BROC Community Action works to provide comprehensive, non-bureaucratic family services. BROC Community Action offers voluntary partnerships with families based on equality, respect, and mutual learning. These partnerships build on families' strengths and successes and have as their goal: moving out of poverty and into self-sufficiency.
BROC Community Action's Board of Directors is unique in that it is a tripartite board. As defined, in the governing documents for Community Action organizations: "in the case of a community action agency or non-profit organization, each board will be constituted so as to assure that (A) one-third of the members of the board are elected public officials, currently holding office, or their representatives, except that if the number of elected officials reasonably available and willing to serve is less that one-third of the membership of the board, membership on the board of appointive public officials may be counted in meeting such one-third requirement; (B) at least one-third of the members are persons chosen in accordance with democratic selection procedures adequate to assure that they are representative of the poor in the area served; and (C) the remainder of the members are officials or members of business, industry, labor, religious, welfare, education, or other major groups and interests in the community.
"When bad times arrive, don't find a place to hide. Just say this too shall pass and believe the bad will not last. Look really hard within, and know that you can win. There are people out there who will help you fight. And so you should know it will be alright."— A.R., Client
Board of Directors / Other Community Action Links
Mary Jean Inglee - President, Rutland
Kelly Moriarty - Vice President, Rutland
George Sabol - Treasurer, Rutland Town
Lynn Hughes - Secretary, Rutland
Ray Haynes, Rutland
Rep. Mary Howard, Rutland
Lori Peer, Dorset
Shanna LaFlamme, Rutland
Jason Goodspeed, Rutland
Carrie Dougherty, Rutland
Christopher Hoyt, West Haven