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CANI Connections
January 2014

This administration today, here and now, declares unconditional war on poverty in America. … It will not be a short or easy struggle, no single weapon or strategy will suffice, but we shall not rest until that war is won. The richest nation on earth can afford to win it. We cannot afford to lose it.
— President Lyndon B. Johnson, January 8, 1964
This January marks the 50th anniversary of the War on Poverty which also marks the beginning of Community Action Agencies (although CANI does not celebrate our 50th anniversary until next year). To read more about the War on Poverty and what has happened since 1964, check out the new report from the Center for American Progress, "The War on Poverty: Then and Now."

From Head Start to a Career


 â€œMy favorite part of the job is knowing that what I am doing is helpful.” 

Family Development is about new beginnings. It is a program that helps people set and reach their goals when they are ready for a change. For Beckie Reed who works in the Family Development program at CANI, this is why she finds her job so satisfying.

“It is inspiring to see people who have hit rock bottom ten times and say I am ready now,” says Beckie who understands what it’s like to overcome obstacles.

Beckie attended CANI Head Start in the late eighties. She doesn’t remember many details about it, but she does recall the encouragement she got from the teachers and the fun she had making new friends.

She also remembers that her mother “busted her butt trying to do her best” for Beckie and her sister. At the time, her mom was a single parent who didn’t have a lot of resources. Knowing what she knows now, Beckie says there might have been more services for her family that her mother didn’t know about. This motivates her even more in her job to make sure that she is connecting people to all the help they can get.

When asked what was the catalyst that made her decide to take a different path in life (than members of her family) she couldn’t really pinpoint one thing. “I just looked at my circumstances and said, ‘this isn’t what I want for my life.’” She also felt a responsibility to make things better for her nephew of whom she has been the legal guardian for five years. She has had a huge part in raising him for the past nine of his fourteen years.

Not only did Beckie want something more for herself and her nephew, but she also wanted to help others find a better path for their lives as well – to break the negative cycles that may be going on in their lives.

After going to college and getting her degree in Human Services, she had a few different jobs in the field before ending up at CANI where she had wanted to work for several years. Beckie recently celebrated one year of employment at CANI.

“My favorite part of the job is knowing that what I am doing is helpful. And (hopefully) inspiring and encouraging people to reach their dreams and better their lives.”

For more information about Family Development or Head Start, see the program pages on our web site.

CANI Seeking Applicants for Child Care Assistance Program

CANI is seeking eligible applicants who live in Allen, DeKalb, Elkhart, Kosciusko, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben, and Whitley counties. The Child Care Assistance program provides subsidized child care vouchers for eligible low-income households. Parents must be working and/or going to school in order to qualify.

Interested families can print and complete the waiting list application found on the CANI website. To schedule an appointment, applicants can call CANI at 1-800-589-2264 and press "1" for Family Support.

More information about this program can be found on the CANI website.

Giving to CANI

There is never a bad time to make a charitable contribution to CANI. Your generous donation helps us to directly provide necessary services to those most in need in our communities.

Did you know? If you want your gift to help fund a specific program, you can choose for the contribution to go directly to that service. You can also choose to donate to the CANI Endowment, which helps to provide a steady stream of funding for years to come.

Your tax-deductible contribution can be quickly and easily made using our secure website.
CANI Mission Statement
CANI helps communities, families, and individuals
remove the causes and conditions of poverty.
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