Honolulu Community Action Program, Inc. (HCAP) is a nonprofit human service agency that has been servicing the island community since 1965. It is our belief and philosophy that no individual should be denied the opportunity to share and contribute fully to the best of his/her capabilities in the social and economic well being and prosperity of our society. Hence, HCAP is committed to alleviating the conditions of poverty on O'ahu by promoting opportunities for the economically disadvantaged to attain greater social and economic mobility.
We also serve as a catalyst in encouraging effective local advocacy, enabling public officials and the community to understand the needs and problems of the low-income and in mobilizing resources in a coordinated effort to improve poverty conditions. The origin of the community action network evolved from the passage of the Economic Opportunity Act enacted by U.S. Congress in 1964. The Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) was subsequently created within the Office of the President of the United States. Rule and regulations were promulgated from OEO as well as several great programs such as Head Start and Job Corps that are still in existence throughout the U.S. In 1965, it was the task of the State Office of Economic Opportunity under its Director, Mr. Thomas Gill, to establish HCAP as a community action agency on the Island of O'ahu. At that time, it was then decided that it would be more expedient to find an existing agency capable and available for organizing and sponsoring HCAP. Mr. Gill negotiated with the Director of the Honolulu Council of Social Agencies, Mr. Hiroshi Minami, for the sponsorship of HCAP. The agreement was made and for the first three years HCAP was a delegate agency of the Council.
In 1981, President Ronald Reagan converted block grant and renamed the funding source to the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) Program. Funds were dispersed directly to the governors of states who were to designate an agency within government to administer the grant in accordance with the rules and regulations of the CSBG Act.
The purpose of HCAP has remained unchanged since the inception of the OCS Act and is imbedded in the CSBG Act today. It states that HCAP must "provide a wide range of services to reduce poverty, assist in revitalizing low-income communities, and empower low-income families and individuals to become fully self-sufficient." HCAP carries out its mission through multi-varied community programs throughout O'ahu. Annually, HCAP serves over 17,000 low-income clients in the areas of job preparation, placement and follow-up; education for children, youth and adults; basic needs including food, shelter and utilities; community advocacy; coordination and resource mobilization. HCAP provides these services with an annual budget of approximately $18 million and a staff of over 300 employees.