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The learning community capacity-building model is a conduit for transformational learning for the Community Action Network.  For those charged with building capacity and organizational change management, whether for a local Community Action Agency (CAA), a state network, or the individuals served by a CAA, the learning community model can be a highly effective approach. This model, employing goal setting, training, knowledge generation, collaboration, peer learning, resource sharing, and industry engagement provides practitioners with contextualized learning and opportunities for positive changes in organizational culture. The approach helps leverage resources, disseminate knowledge, and build a network of learners and peer experts who will help foster rapid change and improvement for Community Action and ultimately the human services field.

Building on the body of knowledge from the LCRC project, this toolkit is provided to help state associations, State CSBG Lead Offices, and local CAAs design and deliver a learning community program.  The program model, utilized by the LCRC, focuses primarily on developing the learning community of CAAs that are interested in learning and improving outcomes related to various anti-poverty topics. Furthermore, the program model is flexible enough to be utilized for

  • Supporting the growth and organizational change of a Community Action Agency;
  • Building the capacity of community organizations in a local community or state; or
  • Empowering customers to achieve personal development goals.

This model is replicable and the intent is for this publication to provide steps for implementation locally, statewide, and nationally.