Mission and Vision

Our Mission in Motion

Helping the Communities of Strafford County


To reduce barriers to help clients improve their economic stability and well-being through education, advocacy, and partnerships.


To eliminate poverty.


Communication, Collaboration, Client-Focus, and Accountability

CAPSC portrait

Founded in 1965, CAPSC is the sole provider in Strafford County to offer a full suite of programs and services designed to have a measurable impact on the health and welfare of children, seniors, and people experiencing low incomes.

Without the services provided by our agency, many local residents would be without a means to provide for their basic needs, including food, education, child care, utilities like heat and electricity, transportation, housing, emergency shelter, and access to other services.

Our goal is to fulfill these needs and uphold the intrinsic dignity of our clients. When we can accomplish this, we are creating new, brighter futures not only for them, but also the greater community to which we all belong.

The agency is governed by a unique, tripartite Board of Directors, composed of elected officials, community leaders from the private and public sectors, and past or present clients. Many of CAPSC’s staff members have lived experience, and many have been past or current clients of CAPSC’s programs and services.

The unique blend of community-based leadership and staffing at CAPSC makes the agency distinctively qualified to provide programs and services to those in need in Strafford County.

CAPSC currently employs nearly 150 staff who provide services throughout Strafford County at offices located in Dover, Farmington, Rochester, and Somersworth.

Stories of Support

“I was pregnant, and we told them about the work the house needed. They came out and did an inspection. They approved us for the weatherization program. This amazing company came in and insulated under the roof. We have new windows, a new back door and new vents. They are talking about maybe more work next year, maybe a new roof. We were always cold and now we’re not. We are so grateful.”

When Cory’s son Ashton was an infant, she noticed that his cry sounded odd, and that he kept curling up. She checked with her family support specialist, Deidre, who told her to trust her instincts to see a doctor. Shortly after, Ashton got life-saving surgery for intussusception, a complication of the intestines. Cory says the Healthy Families America Program saved her son’s life, and that Deidre continues to support her and her family.

“CAPSC’s Head Start Program may be one of those best-kept secrets. As a parent, you need to become involved with the program. We did a lot of field trips, and we learned a lot, like how to check the car seats to see if they are in right. I found out I was doing it the wrong way. They have parent workshops, like how to budget your money. You can leave your kids and know they are safe. More people should know about it and the guidelines. This program made a difference in my family. Head Start helped me get ready for a driver’s test and sent me for a class to learn English.”

Moments in CAPSC History

Our Funding and Partnerships

CAPSC receives funding and authority from the federal Community Services Block Grant, as well as state and local funds; United Way grants, foundation and charitable funds; fees for service; municipal support, and donations. As CAPSC continues to grow to meet the community’s needs, we recognize the huge need to expand donations to offset the costs of current programs and to start new programs.


About Community Action

Community Action Agencies came about as a result of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s Economic Opportunities Act of 1964, during a time when America’s poverty rate was at a crushing 19%. A Community Action Agency (CAA) is a local organization with the mission of reducing poverty through locally designed and delivered programs and services, targeted to the specific needs of the community. CAAs exist in virtually every county in the U.S., numbering more than 1,000 nationwide, including five in New Hampshire. Most are private nonprofits but some are units of local government, and they are connected by a common goal of preventing and reducing poverty through access to employment opportunities, housing assistance, nutrition services, family support, and bettering the conditions under which people live.

Individual agencies in New Hampshire

Community Action Partnership of Strafford County
Community Action Program of Belknap-Merrimack Counties, Inc.
Southwestern Community Services, Inc.
Southern New Hampshire Services, Inc.
Tri-County Community Action Program, Inc.

To learn more about our statewide network, visit: https://www.capnh.org/.
To learn more about the national Community Action Partnership network, visit https://communityactionpartnership.com/