News & Events

Stars of Community Action 2017

20170518_194510Paul and Norma  Desjardins (from left) were awarded the 2017 Stars of Community Action from Kara Hay, President Maine Community Action Association  and Jason Parent, CEO Aroostook County Action Program.

Dr. Norma Desjardins and her husband Paul (both Head Start attendees) saw the tremendous need for low-cost pediatric dental services in northernmost Maine.  Eight years ago, they started the Saint Appollonia Pediatric Dental clinic.  It is now a thriving practice service thousands of patients, most of which are low-income and would not otherwise have access to dental care.



Northern New England CAA Conference (NNECAA)

Join us at the Northern New England Community Action Association Conference

Tuesday, May 16 – Friday, May 19, 2017 At the Sunday River Resort Grand Summit Hotel






Project Heat Telethon January 19, 2017


The Project Heat telethon, sponsored by Dead River, starts at 5 a.m. on January 19 with phones being manned by NEWS CENTER 6 staff.  Proceeds will provide emergency heating assistance through the ten state United Ways and Community Action Agencies.

2016 Politics, Poverty and the Presidency Forum

Presented by: New England Community Action Partnership (NECAP), the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities, the Community Action Partnership, and the National Community Action Foundation (NCAF)

Save the date for this exciting opportunity to hear from presidential candidates, elected officials, and experts in the field around poverty issues and trends facing our communities with Community Action colleagues and Alliance members.

Last year, New England’s Community Action network served over 1.5 million people to meet their basic needs and become self-sufficient. There are 63 Community Action Agencies in New England which employ more than 13,000 people. The Alliance’s member agencies have served more than 4.6 million people across the U.S. and employ more than 138,000 people.

Community Action and the Alliance work every day to empower people in need, equip them with the tools and skills they need to help them reach economic security and sustainability, and help them build stronger communities. All presidential candidates have been invited, along with policymakers and experts in the field around poverty and inequality. Confirmed attendees and speakers include Democratic presidential candidate Martin O’Malley; Greg Kaufmann, Center for American Progress & Talk Poverty; Pulitzer Prize winning investigative reporter and author David Cay Johnston; and, Dr. Gary Melton, Ph.D., associate director for community development and social policy in the Kempe Center for Prevention and Treatment of Child Abuse and Neglect at the University of Colorado.

Date: January 21-22, 2016

Where: Radisson Hotel Nashua, Nashua, New Hampshire

Information: Visit for all event registration and hotel information.

Rates: Registration rate: $175; hotel rate: $109/night.

Hotel contact: Call 603-888-9970 and use code NECAP.


Charlie Newton awarded Star of Community Action

Charlie Newton was recently awarded the Star of Community Action for his four decades long work assisting in preventing, reducing or eliminating poverty.    Charlie has held various positions including Bus Driver, Head Start Teacher, Head Start Director, Equal Employment Opportunity Officer and most recently as CEO of Penquis ( the community action agency based in Bangor) for the last 27 years.  Under his leadership, the agency grew into a dynamic organization with a staff of 325 serving 30,000 people annually.

Charlie Newton, Penquis CEO accepts the Star of Community Action Award from Mike Burke, MCAA Vice-President

“Fantastic work is being done in Maine”

These were the words of the Department of Energy (DOE) representatives when they visited Maine recently to monitor weatherization work completed by PROP, the Portland based community action agency.The DOE went on to remark that there is no doubt that energy is being saved and that there is a culture in Maine of going above and beyond to ensure high quality work. Community action agencies have been working in the weatherization field for over 40 years and have weatherized over 1500 homes over the last 12 months.

Star of Community Action Award Recipient Charleen Chase

Charleen Chase was recently awarded the Star of Community Action Award for her outstanding service to community action. Having been a vital part of Community Concepts for over 30 years, Charleen exemplifies the spirit of the award by her dedication, leadership and her belief that “helping people, changing lives” is not just a tagline, but a way of life.