Community Action changes people’s lives, embodies the spirit of hope, improves communities, and makes America a better place to live. We care about the entire community, and we are dedicated to helping people help themselves and each other.

– The Promise of Community Action


Empower and advocate for people to enhance their self-sufficiency by maximizing community resources.


Thriving individuals, families and communities leading a vibrant southeast Minnesota region.

Core Values

Passion to Serve

We are committed to providing outstanding services supported by caring, compassionate staff, earning the trust of all.


We are led by our mission, vision and values, considering them in all our decision making as we continually seek to improve our services.


We treat everyone fairly and with dignity by listening and acknowledging different viewpoints.


We are honest, responsible stewards of all resources entrusted to us.


Community Action Agencies (CAAs) are nonprofit private and public organizations established under the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 to fight America’s War on Poverty. CAAs help people to help themselves in achieving self-reliance. Today there are approximately 1,000 CAAs, serving the poor in 96 percent of the counties within the United States, as well as in Puerto Rico and the Trust Territories. CAAs are a primary source of direct support for the more than 34.5 million people who live in poverty in the United States. There are currently 26 community action agencies in the State of Minnesota and most are private, non-profit corporations.

Although programs and services have changed over the years since the agency’s founding in 1966, Semcac remains dedicated to fighting poverty and helping people help themselves and each other.

Read more about Semcac’s history
Halvo - Semcac's First E.D.

Halvor Lacher
1st Executive Director, 1966-1987

Annual Report

Serving the People

County Impact Reports

Voter Registration & Voting Information

Semcac fully recognizes the importance of citizen participation in the political process, at local, state, and national levels. Exercising one’s right to become a registered voter and taking on the responsibility of voting is not only good citizenship but a mark of community leadership and personal empowerment.

You are eligible to vote if you:

  • will be at least 18-years-old on Election Day
  • are a citizen of the United States
  • will have resided in Minnesota for 20 days immediately preceding Election Day
  • use the address where you currently reside (live)
  • have any felony conviction record discharged, expired, or completed
  • are not under court-ordered guardianship where a court has revoked your voting rights
  • have not been ruled legally incompetent by a court of law