Alliance of Community Assistance Ministries, Inc.
710 North Post Oak Road, Suite 210
Houston, Texas 77024
(713) 640-5192 Main Line
ACAM provides support and services to ministries
and does not provide financial assistance directly
to the general public. Please call 2-1-1 for basic needs and financial assistance.
ACAM Introduction Presentation
Mission:To advance high impact collaboration, service excellence and organizational development among community assistance ministries
Vision: ACAM envisions a community that is supported by a network of faith based collaborative ministries that provide opportunities for families and individuals to meet and rise above their basic needs.
ACAM Members are:
• Held to a higher standard, and
• Community partners who mentor peer ACAM members to benefit the network and the community
Click here for answers to frequently asked questions about ACAM.
ACAM's CORE PROGRAM COMPONENTS:
Capacity Building: ACAM promotes sound practices in nonprofit operations and programming. Organizational assessments inform members on areas of strength and weakness and are used to develop capacity building plans. ACAM supports plan implementation through stipends for training and consulting and direct grants to develop organizational infrastructure.
Networking and Training: This component promotes best practice knowledge, peer learning and information exchange for the following groups: executive directors, resource development, volunteer management, program development and Thrift Store Institute. Peer mentoring relationships are developed among executive directors. This component also helps to build relationships between ACAM members and funders.
Advocacy and Outreach: This component is aimed at increasing membership by reaching out to underserved parts of Greater Houston, raising the profile of member organizations as service hubs in their communities and raising awareness around the issues affecting the people served by the CAMs. Activities are focused on rallying support for initiatives and funding that will provide pathways out of poverty for ACAM’s member ministries’ clients.
Collaborative Initiatives: ACAM helps members use their collective strength to develop city-wide service streams and service models that address root causes of poverty. ACAM also organizes member- and funder-driven initiatives to provide immediate response to member needs. ACAM is effective in coordinating efforts to address emergency situations affecting the lives of the clients served by member organizations, including but not limited to disaster relief.
Management Support: From its beginnings as a funder-initiated project, ACAM has a deeply ingrained appreciation and recognition that ongoing strategic discussion, development and evaluation is critical to the continued success of any organization or collaborative. ACAM’s client organizations and collaborative partners receive an array of supports from ACAM including fiduciary policy and procedure development, case management development assistance, resource development, and leadership and staff mentoring and training.
For a one page overview of ACAM program components, click here.
ACAMs Awards and Affiliations• 25thAnnual Governor’s Volunteer Awards – Community Capacity Builder
- • March 13th – Alliance of Community Assistance Ministries of Greater Houston
Day as proclaimed by the City of Houston and Harris County
- • Coalition for the Homeless Faith Breakfast Sponsor
- • Click here for Funder Testimonials
- • For a list of funders and other specifics about ACAM, please review our
Annual Reports on the REPORTS page.
Ongoing evaluation is critical to the continued success of any program. Through the services of trained consultants, ACAM members complete comprehensive on-site assessments to determine whether increased collaboration, new learning and growth in services resulted from their participation.
ACAM also enables ministries to evaluate their own programs by offering specialized training, one-on-one coaching, organizational assessment tools and the services of an external evaluator. Participants review specific client outcomes and capacity building efforts in order to develop actionable goals and indicators that better measure community impact.
ACAM and its members designed and implemented the Nine Elements Assessment Tool (NEAT©), an evidence-based system for assessing nonprofit organizational capacity. The project team that designed NEAT© included three categories of stakeholders: 1) executive directors representing the nonprofits that would use the system, 2) the Alliance of Community Assistance Ministries (ACAM), and 3) external evaluators who facilitate the assessments.
ACAM builds nonprofit capacity to increase organizational
sustainability and help groups proactively respond to growing
and changing community needs.
ACAM is part of the growing field of management support organizations (MSOs) that assist nonprofits in developing capacity. MSOs like ACAM have a challenging role with responsibilities to two sets of clients: the nonprofits to which they provide capacity building assistance and the funding community, which expects measurable results from their investment in these programs. The active involvement of nonprofits in “setting the agenda” for capacity building is challenging but important to creating effective programs. Organizational development requires commitment and the nonprofits involved must be confident that the expected outcomes are relevant for their organizations. Their input on content and format can help ensure that the program is customized to fit their context and needs, a factor that can increase program impact. Both ACAM and its nonprofit members are equally charged with identifying goals that that are achievable, but also exciting to funders and board members.