In Honor of Juneteenth 2020

The history of the Community Action movement is rooted in the belief that the experience of poverty is of fundamental concern to all Americans, that we are all directly and indirectly impacted by the existence of poverty, and only when our most marginalized community members thrive can we all thrive. The persistent existence of poverty is morally and ethically wrong, and for 44 years the Community Action Partnership of North Dakota has worked tirelessly within our communities to support struggling families work to achieve economic independence.

We know that despite our efforts, Black, brown, and Indigenous people in North Dakota make up a disproportionate amount of those experiencing low levels of social and economic well-being. This means that across the state our Black, brown, and Indigenous community members are more likely to live in poverty, experience economic insecurity, and that this reality impacts the wellbeing of us all.

With the killing of George Floyd a few weeks ago while in police custody, racial inequities and the resulting social and economic injustices can no longer be decentralized in our efforts to eradicate poverty. We must make the connection between systemic racism and persistent poverty and recognize that as long as one of these systems remains embedded in America, we will not be able to fully eradicate either experience.

Racism, whether individual, institutional, or systemic, is of fundamental concern to all Americans. We are all directly and indirectly impacted by the existence of racism. The persistent existence of racism is morally and ethically wrong. Only when our most marginalized community members are free from racism can we all thrive.

Today, on Juneteenth, we are especially reminded of the historical implications of our words versus our actions. The signing of the Emancipation Proclamation formally ordered that enslaved people were to be freed. However, it was not until two-and-a-half years later, June 19th, 1865, that the news finally reached Galveston, Texas and the remaining enslaved people were freed. This disparate experience of freedom and justice continues today through enduring racial inequities.

We at CAPND know that inequity and injustice will continue until our actions match our words. We are committed to establishing more meaningful working relationships with those representing and advocating on behalf of our Black, brown, and Indigenous community members to further embed racial justice in our work. Within our own organization, we commit to training staff, board members and volunteers on the pervasive issues of racial discrimination, like implicit bias and white privilege, which directly impacts our day-to-day work of eliminating poverty.

There is no peace without justice and accountability. It is not enough to condemn racism. We must be actively anti-racist in all our pursuits. With the support of North Dakotan’s moved by the tragedy of George Floyd’s unnecessary death, the National Community Action Partnership, and CAP agencies across the country, we will continue helping people help themselves and each other.

- Community Action Partnership of North Dakota


The Promise of Community Action

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.

 


About Community Action

Community Action Agencies (CAAs) are nonprofits originally established under the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 to fight America's War on Poverty. Today, North Dakota has seven CAAs on the front-lines of the battle. These seven agencies provide essential services to every region and all 53 counties of the state.

CAAs enable low-income people of all ages to secure the opportunities they need to obtain and maintain economic security.

Celebrate National Family Literacy Day!

Celebrate National Family Literacy Day!

This Friday, Nov. 1, is National Family Literacy Day, and kicks of National Literacy Month. It was first designated in 1994 in order to raise awareness of the importance of family literacy. By encouraging and educating parents and caregivers, National Family Literacy Day aims to instill a lifelong habit of reading in children. 

Studies have found that the earlier parents become involved in their children’s literacy, the longer lasting its effects will be. Parental literacy participation is also a known predictor of a child’s achievements in his or her adolescence and adult life. 

If you’re looking for ideas to celebrate National Family Literacy Day, look no further. We’ve come up with a handy list your family will love.

1. Plan themed family reading nights.
Reading can be an incredibly engaging experience, so why not try making it more interactive? Build a “spaceship” fort in the living room while reading books about astronauts, or pitch a tent in the backyard when you read stories about nature. The entire family will get a kick out of immersing themselves in the story, and it will make your kids excited to read.

2. Have your older children read to their younger siblings.
This is a great opportunity for your more advanced readers to explain larger words or break down summaries to their siblings. They can take turns reading sentences or chapters so everyone has a chance to improve their reading skills. This not only helps your children’s minds grow, but it also is a great way for them to bond as siblings.

3. Read books “popcorn” style.
Choose a book for the family to read together, then start reading a few pages at a time. The reader then picks another family member at random to read the next pages. It keeps everyone engaged so they’re prepared to be called on to read. Pop a bowl of popcorn to enjoy a fun-themed snack.

4. Call in long-distance family.
If your kids have grandparents or other relatives out of town, consider calling them or video-chatting them to read to your kids. Your kids will get a kick out of hearing from their loved ones, and your relatives will likely be thrilled to be involved in your kids’ reading development. Simply call them beforehand, and agree on a book you can both pick up from your local library so your kiddos can read along.

5. Read a book, then watch the movie.
Most people tend to say that books are better than their movie adaptations, so test out this theory with your family. Read a book together, and later watch its movie version. Afterward, you can discuss the similarities and differences, and take a family vote on which version was better.

Reading as a family is one of the best ways to grow closer together. Both you and your kids will look forward to evenings spent engrossed in a story. It sets them on track to be lifelong readers, which is a skill that will help them in more ways than one.

  • National CAP
  • National Community Action Foundation
  • NASCSP
    NASCSP
  • Community Action Program Legal Services