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Wednesday, July 17, 2024

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President Biden Tests Positive for Covid; Report: SD ethanol plants release hazardous air pollutants; Report: CA giant sequoia groves in peril after megafires.

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It's grass-cutting season and with it, rural lawn mower races, Montana's drive-thru blood project is easing shortages, rural Americans spend more on food when transportation costs are tallied and a lack of good childcare is thwarting rural business owners.

Community action agencies celebrate 60 years, renew calls to battle poverty

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Monday, June 17, 2024   

Community action agencies in Utah and across the nation are celebrating 60 years of battling poverty and empowering communities, which started with the signing of the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964.

Jennifer Godfrey, CEO of Utah Community Action, said there are a total of nine community action agencies in the Beehive State, with each one aiming to help Utahns in their own unique way. She added all nine organizations have the ability to provide services that can change people's lives.

"Not only is it incredibly humbling to be a part of that work, but it is also such an honor to be working with these individuals who are experiencing poverty," Godfrey noted. "Because everybody deserves a second chance from time to time."

Godfrey pointed out people who experience poverty are not a monolith, because poverty is a complex issue and there is not a single reason behind it for many people. In Utah, Native Americans experience the highest rate of poverty at just above 27%.

Utah has been a leader when it relates to volunteerism, and Godfrey encourages Utahns to continue strengthening its standing year-round by contacting their local action agency to help.

Utah's poverty rate is just below 9%, which sits below the national average of around 12%.

Godfrey stressed new challenges like increasing food, medical and housing costs are taking a toll on Utah residents. She added most people don't realize how many Utahns are actually living on the edge.

"In some instances, many instances in fact, the vast majority of individuals are one paycheck away from having a crisis," Godfrey asserted.

Regardless of the situation, Godfrey emphasized her organization is there to help, as action agencies are designed to be nimble to the needs of their respective communities.


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