Supporting the work of the
Frederick Community Action
Agency in its service to the
citizens of Frederick, Maryland.

In FY 2011, the Community Action Agency had 4,737 encounters with 2,137 homeless or lower-income individuals in The City of Frederick, educating them of nutrition, health, shelter and other services available to them. Learn more by downloading our annual report.


The Frederick Community Action Agency (FCAA), originally named the Frederick Community Center, was started in 1968 as a private, non-profit agency. The "Community Center" was initiated to provide social and recreational programs for low-income residents living in the southend of Frederick (a neighborhood with a high incidence of poverty and related social problems). As social problems increased, two of the founding members of the Community Center, Lord Nickens and Seaven Gordon, worked closely with former mayor Ronald N. Young to address the issue of poverty in downtown Frederick. In 1979, under the leadership of Mr. Young, the City of Frederick purchased the historic B&O railroad station that houses the Community Center and took over the operation of the programs. In addition, Mr. Young was successful in obtaining a federal Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) to help fund the operation of the Community Center.

The early 1980's saw an increase in homelessness in Frederick and the Community Center responded by opening a Soup Kitchen, a Foodbank, and a Drop-In Center. The federally-funded Health Care for the Homeless Program was initiated in 1989 to provide primary health care and related services. In 1993, through a creative partnership with the Frederick County Government, the Frederick Community Center was designated the "Community Action Agency" for all of Frederick County and the organization was renamed the Frederick Community Action Agency. Former mayor Paul P. Gordon and former county commissioner Ronald Sundergill were instrumental in passing the joint resolution that supported the "Community Action" designation. Construction of the transitional shelter, built adjacent to the FCAA, started in 1992 and the 31-bed facility opened in April of 1994. The Frederick Transitional Shelter provides transitional shelter and serves approximately 60 families on an annual basis. As an addition to the local continuum of care, former mayor James S. Grimes and Mr. Spurrier negotiated the lease of a vacant, State-owned townhouse in downtown Frederick and converted the facility into the Frederick Transitional Apartments; the facility has been fully rehabilitated and now provides three-units of long-term transitional housing for homeless families. In 2000, the FCAA purchase a building in downtown Frederick to serve as a "one-stop shop" for FCAA Housing Counseling, Weatherization and Housing Rehabilitation Programs. In 2005, with the help of several foundations, the FCAA purchased and rehabilitated a deteriorated warehouse to serve as a foodbank and food storage facility.

The Mission Statement of the Frederick Community Action Agency is:
The Frederick Community Action Agency, the federally designated Community Action Agency for Frederick County, Maryland, administers programs and services to assist disadvantaged and low-income people, thereby, ameliorating the causes and effects of poverty.

Over the last 44 years, the FCAA has grown into a comprehensive multi-service agency that operates a diverse array of programs. In 1988, the agency was administering one federal grant and had a budget of $107,000. The FCAA is currently administering twenty-six (26) different state and federal grants and the FY 2012 budget has grown to $3,388,445. Of this amount, the City of Frederick provides direct funding of $700,000 and the remainder of the budget is comprised of grants from various federal and state agencies and private foundations. The FCAA is also sponsored by a non-profit entity, the Friends for Neighborhood Progress (FNP), and that budget has increased to approximately $1,065,687 on an annual basis including donations of goods (e.g., food items) and services. The FNP budget includes donations from the private sector and a $20,000 allocation from the United Way of Frederick County. The non-profit status of the FNP has also been used to leverage philanthropic foundation funds for capital projects like the construction of the transitional shelter. The combined FCAA and FNP budgets bring the overall agency budget to a total of $4,454,132 for FY 2012.

The FCAA is organized into nine (9) program teams supervised by an Assistant Director and six (6) Coordinators who report to Mike Spurrier, Director of the agency. The senior staff members are: Todd Johnson, Assistant Director; Sarah McAleavy, Coordinator of Food and Nutrition Services; Mark Colie, Coordinator of Weatherization Services; Michele Ott, Coordinator of Administrative Services; Janet Jones, Coordinator of Medical and Outreach Services; Brad Petersen, Coordinator of Housing Services; and Richard Broadbent, Coordinator of Facility Services. Prior to working at the FCAA, Mr. Spurrier served as a VISTA volunteer and Outreach Coordinator at Morningside Emergency Shelter in Brattleboro, Vermont. The thirteen-bed emergency shelter served homeless families and individuals. Mr. Spurrier was responsible for a variety of tasks including fundraising and shelter operations. He has also been employed as the Kitchen Coordinator for the Keene Community Soup Kitchen in Keene, New Hampshire and the Outreach Project Director for Southeastern Vermont Community Action, Inc. in Bellows Falls, Vermont. During his tenure at the FCAA, he has received several awards for community service including an award from the Maryland Association of Realtors for Outstanding Community Service and an award from the Maryland Governor's Advisory Board on Homelessness for Outstanding Public Service; he was nominated for the second award by Dr. Jacqueline H. Rogers, the former Secretary of the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development. Mr. Spurrier was subsequently appointed to the Governor's Advisory Board on Homelessness by former Governor William Donald Schaefer and was re-appointed by former Governor Parris Glendening. In 1996, Mr. Spurrier earned certification as a Certified Community Action Professional (CCAP) from the National Association of Community Action Agencies (NACAA) and has been re-certified every four (4) years.

The following are major accomplishments achieved by the Frederick Community Action Agency:

1968 - FCAA opens as the Frederick Community Center
1972 - FCAA becomes a member agency of the United Way
1979 - FCAA becomes an agency of City Government
1984 - FCAA establishes a Soup Kitchen and a Foodbank
1989 - FCAA establishes a Health Care for the Homeless Program 3
1992 - FCAA receives award from Governor's Advisory Board on Homelessness
1992 - FCAA establishes the PATH Program
1993 - FCAA designated countywide Community Action Agency
1994 - FCAA opens newly constructed transitional shelter
1997 - City/FCAA receives award from Maryland Municipal League
1997 - FCAA opens long-term transitional housing facility
1997 - City/FCAA receive HUD Best of Practice award
1999 - FCAA receives an Exemplary Program Award from CMHS/SAMSHA
2002 - FCAA receives an Award from Fred. Co. Human Relations Commission
2002 - FCAA manages a $160,000 renovation of the City Youth Center
2005 - FCAA receives national grant for Community Land Security Program
2006 - FCAA purchases and opens a new foodbank facility
2006 - FCAA receives a Governor's Citation from former Gov. Robert Ehrlich
2006 - FCAA establishes a HUD-funded Housing First Program
2008 - FCAA designated to administer city-wide housing programs including the Moderately Priced Dwelling Unit (MPDU) Program, House Keys for Employees (HK4E), and the Community Partners Incentive Program (CPIP).
2011 - FCAA pick-ups the operation of a School-Based Health Center located at Hillcrest Elementary School.