Mission and Vision: The ACAM Network advances collaboration to create community-wide solutions for thriving nonprofits, neighborhoods and families. We are an innovative, connected network of 14 faith-based assistance organizations that ensures families in need have a path to stability, health and wealth. We develop initiatives that foster evaluation and build a learning community; align and garner talent and resources to support the expanding reach of the network; generate technology and data-driven solutions with the network; and strategically support network partners who are premier and expert providers of basic needs and homelessness prevention services.
Background: Many of ACAM's current partners formed after the 1980’s energy industry collapse. Faced with unprecedented basic needs requests, congregations pooled resources to create centralized service centers (community assistance ministries or CAMs), some of which later connected to form the ACAM Network. This network of CAMs offers services inclusively to the entire community without requiring an expression of faith as a condition of service. Through a mix of 160 different human services, ACAM serves an average of 200,000 families in Greater Houston annually, preventing hunger and homelessness and offering opportunities to achieve stability.
The network is currently made up of 14 high-impact, faith-based organizations:
The individuals served by ACAM’s Network are among the most vulnerable in our region. 99% of clients are in the spectrum of low-income with 75% in the lowest bracket, "extremely low income." 77% of adults have a high school diploma or less, and 37% are underemployed (have a job but not enough resources to make ends meet). Most families have about six barriers to stability, which may include lack of transportation, illness without medical coverage, threat of eviction, abusive relationships, and unemployment.
ACAM’s collaborative leadership empowers partners to best meet the needs of their neighborhoods and builds the region’s capacity to serve. We are proud our network partners believe ACAM adds value, as evidenced by their commitment to the work involved in implementing collaborative programs, such as collecting the service data we use to observe high-level network trends that inform our long-range strategies and engaging in sustainability planning to embed new programs into their service streams.
Collaboration is essential for regional transformation. ACAM supports the development of relationships and organizational infrastructure, so collaborative programs can have their greatest impact. Specifically, ACAM empowers partners to share lessons learned, develop best practices, leverage support, optimize programs, standardize outcomes, and distribute the costs associated with activities such as high-quality evaluation. Evaluation is central to the ACAM model and examines organizational development work with nonprofits and collaborative programs that help families pursue economic mobility. ACAM also provides opportunities for partner leadership to engage in big-picture thinking and develop cross-sector relationships. ACAM-led collaborations include Resiliency FIRST, Financial Coaching Collaborative, Homelessness Prevention & Intervention, Integrated Services for Healthy Communities, and Disaster Preparedness & Relief.
Mission and Vision: The ACAM Network advances collaboration to create community-wide solutions for thriving nonprofits, neighborhoods and families. We are an innovative, connected network of 14 faith-based assistance organizations…