Message From Our Director

Welcome to Quin Rivers Community Action Agency

Jack LanierThroughout the United States, uneven progress has been achieved since the War on Poverty was declared 52 years ago under the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964. Nationally, the poverty rate has declined from 18 percent in 1964 to about 14 percent in 2015. Since Quin Rivers was founded in 1970, Virginia’s poverty rate has dropped to less than six percent. This reduction in poverty—defined as household income less than 200 percent below the Federal Poverty Level—is attributable to the work of numerous programmatic initiatives, including the efforts of the 31 Community Action Agencies throughout the Commonwealth.

Individuals seeking information from our website will note that Quin Rivers’ innovative and evidence-based programs are clearly focused on strengthening individual, family, and community development to eliminate poverty and build self-sufficiency among populations that are socio-economically challenged.

The need for Community Action Agencies such as Quin Rivers continues to be evident in dramatic achievements as recently reported by the U. S. Census Bureau:

  • In 2015, 3.5 million Americans were able to breach the poverty line as an economic recovery hit a tipping point.
  • Poverty declined among every group. African-Americans and Hispanics—who account for more than 45 percent of those below the poverty line—experienced the largest improvement.
  • Overall, 2.9 million more jobs were created from 2014 to 2015, helping millions of unemployed people cross over into the ranks of regular wage earners.

While the Census Bureau’s report includes some good news, Community Action Agencies continue to face significant challenges in addressing poverty. For instance, the Census Bureau’s report shows that:

  • Half of Americans will experience at least a year of poverty or teeter on the brink of poverty at some point during their working years.
  • To be considered impoverished in 2015, a family of two parents and two children had to have income of about $24,000 or less. According to experts, a family of four needs at least twice as much—about $50,000 per year—to maintain an adequate standard of living.

The pages on our website highlight strategic initiatives that provide more than a safety net and lifeline for individuals and families to rise above dependency—they present a clear path to building long-lasting self-sufficiency.

Jack O. Lanier, DrPH, MHA, FACHE – Executive Director