ENCAP reduces the power of poverty in Eastern Nebraska through direct service, and results-driven partnerships.
- We believe all people should be treated with dignity and respect and recognize that structural race, gender, and other inequities remain barriers that must be addressed;
- We believe that our community has the capacity and moral obligation to ensure that no one is forced to endure the hardships of poverty;
- We believe that with hope, adequate resources and opportunities, everyone can reach their fullest potential, and we are committed to achieving that vision;
- We pledge ourselves to creating an environment that pursues innovation and excellence through multi-sector partnership and collaboration.
POVERTY FIGHTING NETWORK & OUR HISTORY
ENCAP is a private, non-profit Community Action Agency responsible for providing social and human services to people facing poverty in Douglas and Sarpy Counties. We are a member of a national network of over 1,100 high performing Community Action Agencies that were established out of the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 to eliminate the causes and conditions of poverty. We are dedicated to providing programming that meets community needs, that responds to the voices of the low-income community, and that demonstrates continuous quality improvement.
A core component of President Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty, Community Action Agencies were created to give communities the resources needed to create local solutions to poverty and its effects. President Johnson selected (Robert) Sargent Shriver, an American diplomat and activist, to lead the creation of all War on Poverty programs (including Community Action, Head Start, and Legal Services for the Poor, among many others). The advocacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a primary driver behind the creation of Community Action programs.
Opened originally as Greater Omaha Community Action (GOCA) in 1965, the agency welcomed new staff member Lt. Col. Charles Lane, a member of the famed Tuskegee Airmen and a CAP Squadron Commander, in 1970. Lt. Col. Lane would serve as our Executive Director until his retirement in 1992.
ENCAP and its national peer network continue this vital work 55 years later in nearly even county in America. Our team carries on the legacy of Community Action’s creators and the many dedicated staff members who have made a lasting impact on our community.
SERVICES AND STRATEGIES
ENCAP helps individuals and families build the skills, hope, and social capital they need to envision and work toward a brighter future. Our mission is aligned with the goals of the National Community Action Network Theory of Change: (see full document HERE).
The people we serve—most of whom have incomes at or below 100% of the federal poverty threshold, or $26,200 for a family of four [AB1]—are working hard to reach economic independence. ENCAP provides basic needs services like food support and financial assistance to get households out of immediate crisis, followed by next step supportive services to help the household move toward longer-term stability.
We design programs that respond to local needs; help families build and maintain economic security; give people with low incomes the opportunity to contribute their time and talents through volunteer and leadership opportunities; and collaborate with local community partners to broaden our work.
As a result of your partnership and support, last year, ENCAP was able to provide 20,127 services to 6,282 individuals through the the following programs:
- Family Wellbeing: Prevents families from entering the child welfare system and helps them build resiliency through a coalition of community partners in Douglas and Sarpy Counties via Community Response.
Crisis Assistance: Provides emergency rent and utility assistance, flood relief assistance, SNAP application assistance, ongoing case management, and connections to community resources. Helpline: (402) 453-5656 ext. 223
- Hunger Relief: We Provide emergency food support to households in Bellevue through the Bellevue Food Pantry (1908 Hancock St. Bellevue); Monthly commodities to income eligible individuals 60+ with monthly incomes of $1,383 or less (130% of the federal poverty level); and Drive up pantry distribution out of our Omaha Senior Pantry (2406 Fowler Avenue).
Senior Wellbeing: ENCAP’s Senior Wellbeing Services provide supports to older adults (60+) to reduce feelings of isolation, and improve health as a result of increased access to nutritious food.
Transportation: Provides transportation to and from school to ESL/migrant and homeless students of OPS, and reliable rides to career seekers and older adults