INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana Institute for Working Families, a program of Indiana Community Action Association, announced today that it has changed its name to Indiana Community Action Poverty Institute. In an effort to bring their name in line with their values as part of Community Action, as well as reinforce their role as anti-poverty advocates for all Hoosiers — the name change was approved on November 10, 2021.
The new name better connects the Institute to its parent organization, Indiana Community Action Association (INCAA). “INCAA has strongly supported the work of the Institute and believes it is a force for good in Indiana. We are proud to have it as a part of our organization, and this name change better reflects the Institute’s connection to our work across Indiana” said Steve Hoffman, Board President of INCAA and CEO of Brightpoint.
The name change also recognizes the Institute’s belief in the promise of the Community Action movement — “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 are dedicated to helping people help themselves and each other.”
“Community Action was born out of the War on Poverty and is committed to improving the lives of all Hoosiers by eliminating the causes and conditions of poverty,” stated Amy Carter, the Institute’s Community Outreach and Engagement Coordinator. “This is perfectly in line with the research and advocacy the Institute has always done, and a major motivator for the name change.”
Founded in 2004, the Institute was born out of a need to look at the systematic causes of poverty that were preventing progress for Hoosier families. In 2009, the Institute moved from its founding parent organization, the Indiana Coalition for Housing and Homeless Issues, to become a program of INCAA.
“When the Institute came to INCAA in 2009, we hoped that we could provide value to the families being served by INCAA’s 22 Community Action Agencies,” stated the Institute’s Director, Jessica Fraser. “I’m not sure that I grasped at the time how much the Institute would gain from connection to the passionate, committed, and innovative servant leaders that are found at all levels in the Community Action movement. Professionally, I have learned so much from Community Action, and I am proud to connect the Institute directly to the Promise of Community Action.”
The Institute still believes that when families are financially stable, they can achieve their full potential and better contribute to their communities. They understand that racial and economic inequities have contributed to economic insecurity for Hoosier families, and that policy plays an important role in dismantling those inequities and in building Hoosier families’ economic well-being.