The Office of the Governor has proclaimed May “Community Action Month in Wisconsin.” The Governor’s proclamation highlights statewide community action programming in the areas of affordable housing, weatherization, food security, employment, entrepreneurship, Head Start, community economic development, health and education. The proclamation further commends WISCAP member agencies in Wisconsin for providing assistance to more than 210,000 low-income and working poor last year.

“We are pleased the Governor has recognized the work of our statewide network and the critical role it plays in addressing and ending poverty in Wisconsin,” said WISCAP Executive Director Brad Paul. “But In order to make further progress, we require greater investment in affordable housing, job training, child care, transportation, and the expansion of health and income supports,” added Paul. “Fighting poverty also requires broad and creative partnerships from the private sector, and we need our friends in the business community and philanthropic world to step up and support WISCAP and our local member agencies.”

Creating the public-private alliance necessary to combat poverty in Wisconsin will be a key theme of this year’s Poverty Matters Summit, a statewide conference jointly sponsored by WISCAP and the Social Development Commission (SDC). The conference is set to take place in Milwaukee September 27-28, and is organized around the theme, “Sharing Our Stories, Cultivating Our Solutions: Closing the Rural-Urban Divide.”

Community Action Month kicks off with WISCAP’s annual meeting and release of the organization’s 2017 Annual Report. The WISCAP board will hear from staff and administrators of five state agencies, including the newly formed Interagency Council on Homelessness, as well as representatives from the offices of Senator Johnson and Senator Baldwin. WISCAP will also be considering the findings of the University of Wisconsin’s Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP) annual Wisconsin Poverty Report to be released in June.

Community Action Month also provides an opportunity for WISCAP to announce a new partnership with the District 7 Council of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT). This initiative is centered on increasing work opportunities through community action agency referrals to the union’s apprenticeship programs in the finishing trades. And, as part of its overall anti-poverty strategy, WISCAP continues to pursue collaborative efforts with a diverse set of institutions, including the School of Business at Edgewood College, the University of Wisconsin-Madison Arts Institute, the University of Wisconsin Law School Pro Bono ProgramWisconsin Primary Health Care Association, and the Global Land Alliance. Finally, on the public education front, researchers interested in the history of anti-poverty work in Wisconsin will now be able to learn more as the result of WISCAP’s recent donation of papers to the Wisconsin Historical Society Division of Library-Archives. These materials help tell the story of over forty years of fighting poverty across the state.

Community Action Month closes out on May 30th with a fundraising event for WISCAP at Madison’s Field Table Restaurant and Market.

A PDF version of the Proclamation can be viewed here.

For more information, please contact Brad Paul, Executive Director, WISCAP,

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