Northwestern Ohio Community Action Commission, Inc. is proud to be an active partner in the national Community Action Partnership network. The Community Action Partnership is made up of more than 1,100 local, private, non-profit and public agencies that have been working to alleviate poverty and empower low-income families in communities throughout the United States since 1964. Our organization was established in 1965 as a private, non-profit social service agency and has been actively serving the citizens of Defiance, Fulton, Henry, Paulding, Van Wert, and Williams counties for over 45 years.
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An Amazing Experience!!

NOCAC recently hosted "The Hunger Banquet" event designed to raise awareness of hunger issues and challenge existing stereotypes within Northwest Ohio.

More than 300 people participated in the experience.  As each guest arrived, they randomly picked their assigned socio-economic class for the evening from five distinct classes (wealthy, upper middle, middle, lower middle, and poverty).  

Those participants lucky enough to have drawn the wealthy class were quickly escorted to tables set with fine china, linen, and candelabra and were serenaded with soft music.  Later they were served a five course meal that included shrimp cocktail and prime rib.  Throughout the night, wait staff was in attendance to meet any needs that arose.

Participants who selected the Poverty level were not so fortunate.  They were the last group to receive their meal and dined at rough wooden spools while sitting on folding chairs or straw bales.  After registering and waiting in line at the soup kitchen, they were given a small bowl of soup and a peanut butter sandwich.

Read more: Hunger Banquet Event

In 2014, the Community Action Network will commemorate its 50th anniversary.  Northwestern Ohio Community Action Commission is pleased to have been an active part of this network since our incorporation in 1965.  

Vendors Needed for 2014 Program

NOCAC is again sponsoring the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) in Defiance, Edgerton, Napoleon, Paulding and Wauseon. We are currently in search of vendors to provide food service at each site.  The program begins June 9, 2014 and will end on August 13. 2014 (Monday through Friday) for a total of 47 days of service.  Meals will not be served on the July 4th holiday. 

Site Average Meals/Day Served Maximum Meals/Day Served
Defiance 70 150
Edgerton 50 100
Napoleon 45 75
Paulding 30 60
Wauseon 40 65


Read more: SFSP Bids

  The Smile Express 

NOCAC's Head Start program has been collaborating with the Dental Center of Northwest Ohio and the "Smile Express" mobile dental bus.  The bus has been coming to our sites to provide dental services for children enrolled in Head Start.  

Dr. Lauren Czerniak has been performing follow-up services to the children.  She expressed concern regarding the condition of the teeth of many of the children in our program.  She shared that she sees children from inner city areas and that they have healthier teeth than the rural children in Northwest Ohio.   

Read more: Dental Health

Caring With Confidence Training Series

NOCAC's Head Start "Caring with Confidence" training series is a family training program designed to teach Head Start parents how to best manage the healthcare needs of their children.

The series is a part of a Health Care Institute program that was established in 2001 with the objective of creating and evaluating healthcare training programs to educate parents.  Inadequate education regarding children's health care needs coupled with soaring health care costs, rising Medicaid spending, and over-utilization of emergency rooms have all contributed to the health care crisis in the United States.  Johnson & Johnson and UCLA Anderson have launched a nationwide healthcare training program to help alleviate some of the issues.

NOCAC received donations from the Defiance Area Foundation, the Paulding Area Foundation and the Defiance Fire Department that helped make this program possible.  We are grateful for their collaboration in making this venture a success.

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Important Dates  

04/07/14 - Policy Council Meeting @ NSCC
04/10/14 - Board of Directors Meeting @ 6pm
04/18/14 - Offices Closed
04/28/14 - Agency In-Service Day

05/05/14 - Policy Council Meeting @ NSCC
05/08/14 - Board of Directors Meeting @ 6pm
05/26/14 - Offices Closed for Memorial Day



How We Help...


Choices That Shouldn't Have To Be Made - My husband has experienced serious health problems over the last few years, If it weren’t for the HEAP program , we would have had to choose between electricity or medicine.  It’s one thing to get help; however, it’s another thing to  get help and not to be made to feel like a number or even more depressing and worthless.  NOCAC staff was warm and friendly when I needed it. Thanks! (Direct Client Quote)

Help When You Need It Most - I might be homeless if it was not for the CHIP funds (Community Home Investment Program).  My husand passed away and left me with past due rent, gas, and different things.  Community Action helped me with these things. (Direct Client Quote)

Employees Who Care -  For those of us that find ourselves in a position of need, especially since I used to be able to just work and meet my own needs, it is hard to ask for help and also hard to be looked at as if somehow we are “less” because we are not able to provide for ourselves all of the time.    But at no time have I felt that way with anyone I have come across in the weatherization program so to simply say “THANK YOU” sounds so small compared to what I feel inside.  The crew will always be in my thoughts because to me they went above and beyond what was asked of them and they did it with such kindness!  (Direct Client Quote)

  455 $162,151
Henry 421 $185,269
Paulding 519 $210,803
Van Wert 452 $116,842
Williams 480 $184,014
Other 13 $4,366
TOTALS 3008 $1,059,952

2013 By the Numbers...

9,992 meals were served and 162 homeless individuals were provided shelter at the Richland Place/PATH Center

103 households received weatherization services through the Home Weatherization Assistance Program which resulted in a average energy consumption savings of 37.7%

572 children and their families were served in the Head Start program

30 individual Development Account enrollment slots were funded and 24 money management workshops were held

17,701 applications for assistance to needy households were processed in our 6 county service area

89 households were assisted through the Homelessness Prevention & Rapid Re-housing Program

9,343 utility payments (heating & cooling) were made to area vendors for households in our 6 county service area

32 households received energy efficiency measures that were funded by the Toledo Edison Community Connections Program

27 households received energy efficiency measures funded by the American Electric Power program

How We Help...

A Family's Support System - The Head Start Program gave me free education for my child.  We would be struggling to pay preschool tuition without the program.  Head Start has been such a god-send to our family.  We have been through a lot in our lives.  I had some bad family times and Head Start always helped me when needed.  They always understood my needs and my children’s.  The teachers are absolutely amazing and so supportive of the family.    We love and cherish the program and the effort behind it. (Direct Client Quote)


Path to Better Living - A father with sole custody of his child was trying to provide for his child’s needs on a limited income and staying with his grandmother so he could also assist her.  The NOCAC Child Care Resource & Referral Specialist helped him apply for the Publicly Funded Child Care Assistance Program so he could work and have day care for his child including preschool education at a day care center.  Subsequently his grandmother passed away and he was concerned about how he was going to afford to stay at the house and pay rent and utilities.  The CCR&R Specialist referred him to the NOCAC Community Service Worker to assess his needs and apply for available assistance.  He is an amazing dad and so thankful for help staff have been able to give. (Staff Submission)

Northwestern Ohio Community Action Commission, Inc. (NOCAC) is one of 50 community action agencies in Ohio. NOCAC is a private, non-profit corporation organized in 1965, as part of the "War on Poverty" by a group of local citizens who became our first Board of Trustees. NOCAC'S function was then, and is now, to plan, develop, and coordinate programs and services designed to help predominantly low-income people in Defiance, Fulton, Henry, Paulding, Van Wert, and Williams counties become more self-sufficient. NOCAC provides services from several locations within our six county area.  A brief explanation of these services is available in this brochure.  To learn more about Community Action Agencies in Ohio, please click here.

NOCAC does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age or disability in employment or the provision of services.