OUR MISSION: To develop and implement long-lasting solutions to combat poverty by empowering low-income residents of Somerset County through economic self-sufficiency initiatives and programs.
OUR VISION: To be a change agent in the lives of low-income residents of Somerset County who are fighting poverty.
HISTORY: The Somerset Community Action Program, Inc. (SCAP) was established in 1965 as one of the first community action programs nationwide set to implement the Economic Opportunities Act. From its inception, the leadership of SCAP has been motivated by progressivism with a strong commitment to community participation in the decision-making process and in shaping the programs and institutions that were set up to serve them.
TAX STATUS: SCAP is recognized as a 501 (c) 3 organization by the Internal Revenue Service. All contributions are tax exempt to the fullest extent of the law. SCAP’s Tax Identification Number is 22-6075617.
CURRENT SCAP PROGRAMMING:
* Child Care: Low-income working families need stable, reliable, affordable childcare that is available during their work hours to support their ability to obtain and maintain employment and achieve self-sufficiency. Research has shown that when single mothers receive assistance in paying for child care, they are better able to keep working, are less likely to need Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, and more likely to earn higher incomes. High-quality early child care and education programs have been found to produce lasting gains on language and math abilities, achievement tests, and reduced rates of grade retention or placement in special education services and are associated with young children’s social and emotional development, especially for children from low-income families. SCAP’s goal is to make our children graduating into Kindergarten have a social transition, rather than an academic and social transition.
* Nutrition Program: Children need nutritious meals to become efficient learners. The children enrolled in SCAP Child Development Program will receive nutritious meals to help improve their health and cognitive skills. For many of our children, these meals may be the only balanced meals they receive all day. SCAP staff monitors children’s development to ensure they are on the World Health Organization’s Infant Height and Weight Growth Chart or the Center for Disease Control and Prevention Chart for older children. In addition, SCAP has partnered with Wawa of Franklin Township to provide additional food to families to help cover weekend shortages.
* Financial Literacy: The President's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy defines personal financial literacy as "the ability to use knowledge and skills to manage financial resources effectively for a lifetime of financial well-being." Personal financial literacy is more than just being able to balance a checkbook, compare prices or get a job. It also includes skills like long-term vision and planning for the future, and the discipline to use those skills every day, and leadership to provide the right direction for sustainability and resilience. The SCAP Financial Literacy Program teaches low-income families these important concepts. Classes are led by financial professionals who are accustomed to working with our clientele. Additionally, SCAP partners Certified Public Accountants with families living in poverty to help them prepare budgets, track savings and build their credit rating.