Bureau of Community Action and Economic Opportunity

The Bureau of Community Action and Economic Opportunity (BCAEO) was established to serve as a statewide advocate for social and economic opportunities for low income persons.

The Bureau coordinates state activities and enters into necessary contracts with community action agencies (CAA) designed to reduce poverty and implement community social and economic programs, working with various government, nonprofit, nonprofit private and other public agencies. BCAEO provides technical assistance to CAAs to improve program planning, program development, administration and the mobilization of public and private resources.

Community Action Agencies

Community Action Agencies (CAAs) were initiated in 1964 as part of President Johnson’s “War on Poverty.” CAAs comprise a nationwide network of over 1,100 agencies that provide services to low-income people in 96% of the nation’s counties.

Michigan has 29 Community Action Agencies providing services to 100% of the geographic area of the state.

CAAs are predominately non-profit organizations and may be public or private entities. Their purpose is to alleviate the conditions and causes of poverty within their community and empower low-income individuals and families to become more self-sufficient.

CAAs are governed by tripartite boards consisting of public, private and consumer sector representatives.

The Community Action Promise: “Community Action changes people’s lives, embodies the spirit of hope, improves communities, and makes America a better place to live. We care about the entire community, and we are dedicated to helping people help themselves and each other.”

Community Action is unique in its comprehensive approach to alleviating poverty. CAAs not only provide a wide variety of services, but also develop community partnerships, involve low-income clients in their operations, and coordinate an array of services within their communities.


BCAEO 2014 Federal Funding Summary:
  • Community Services Block Grant $24.8 million
  • Weatherization DOE $11.8 million
  • LCA—MEAP $7 million
  • LCA—LIHEAP $7 million
  • LCA—S $4 million
Michigan CAA FY2013 Report Summary:
  • 556,640 Poverty Conditions Eliminated
  • 1,931,478 Volunteer Hours
  • 182,138 People Served
  • 51,567 Children Served
  • 55,621 Seniors Served
  • 64% Below 100% Poverty Served
  • $24.8 million CSBG Allocation
  • $4.21 non-federal leveraged by $1 CSBG