Connecticut Association for Human Services
110 Bartholomew Street
Suite 4020
Hartford CT 06106
Contact Information
Address 110 Bartholomew Street
Suite 4020
Hartford, CT 06106-
Telephone (860) 951-2212 x
Fax 860-951-6511
E-mail info@cahs.org
Web and Social Media
Mission

The mission of the Connecticut Association for Human Services, Inc., is to end poverty and engage, equip and empower all families in Connecticut to build a secure future. In order to achieve our mission, CAHS works hand-in-hand with advocates, service providers, private citizens, businesses, labor, policymakers, and government agencies. CAHS has taken the lead statewide in promoting family economic security policies and strategies that empower low-income working families to achieve financial stability, including improved access to basic needs, development of a system of quality early care and education, and effective investments in post-secondary education and job training. Through our efforts, we are able to assist providers and community leaders in linking lower-income residents to existing support programs and services.

At A Glance
Year of Incorporation 1978
Organization's type of tax exempt status Public Charity Type I Supporting Organization
Organization received a competitive grant from the community foundation in the past five years Yes
Leadership
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Robert A. Blakey
Board Chair Dr. Elsa Núñez Ed.D.
Board Chair Company Affiliation President, Eastern Connecticut State University
Financial Summary
Revenue vs Expenses Bar Graph - All Years
Statements
Mission

The mission of the Connecticut Association for Human Services, Inc., is to end poverty and engage, equip and empower all families in Connecticut to build a secure future. In order to achieve our mission, CAHS works hand-in-hand with advocates, service providers, private citizens, businesses, labor, policymakers, and government agencies. CAHS has taken the lead statewide in promoting family economic security policies and strategies that empower low-income working families to achieve financial stability, including improved access to basic needs, development of a system of quality early care and education, and effective investments in post-secondary education and job training. Through our efforts, we are able to assist providers and community leaders in linking lower-income residents to existing support programs and services.

Background

CAHS was founded in 1910 as a volunteer organization that held annual conferences to discuss philosophies and innovations in the field of social work. Our vision over the past century has remained steadfast: a Connecticut where all children and families thrive, regardless of income, and contribute to and share in the state’s growth. CAHS is helping to build a Connecticut where low-income residents work with government, business, labor and faith leaders in developing policies and programs that ensure the state’s prosperity, as well as their own.

CAHS promotes economic security strategies that empower low-income working families to achieve financial independence. CAHS works to reduce poverty and build family economic success (FES) through outreach, education, and policy work. We inform service providers and others to advocate for policy and practice changes that move low- to moderate-income (LMI) families toward prosperity. Most efforts are directed at families under 130 percent of the federal poverty level and all at families under 200 percent of the federal poverty level.

CAHS champions important issues by:

  • Promoting collaboration among ongoing initiatives to help end poverty in Connecticut.
  • Creating a supportive cross-sector network for policies and practices that ensure family economic stability.
  • Connecting to the state’s plans for strengthening its workforce, recharging its economy and reducing child poverty.
  • Building new leadership across sectors to achieve these goals – a broad partnership that includes families, community leaders, nonprofit social services providers and advocates, government, business, labor, faith-based groups and policymakers.
  • Developing and strengthening policies and programs to move families out of poverty and prevent families from falling into poverty by providing universal access to supports and opportunities for low- to middle-income families.

 

A key strength of CAHS is our ability to collaborate with others. We bring together diverse interests – concerned citizens, policy makers, human service providers, corporate leaders, labor leaders, academics, state and municipal organizations, and religious organizations.

 

Across CAHS' various outreach program areas, over 20,000 (directly and indirectly) low- to moderate-income Connecticut residents receive assistance with tax preparation, assistance with banking, and opportunities to improve financial literacy.

 

Impact

CAHS has been at the center of the fight to eliminate poverty in Connecticut for over 100 years.  Every day, we advance policies and deliver programs that help make sure every family and every child has an equal opportunity to thrive and share in our prosperity.

We are proud of our recent accomplishments:
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance:  CAHS puts money in the pockets of hard-working tax filers through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.  In 2018, trained VITA volunteers in New Haven prepared more than 4,600 tax returns, returning $7 million in state and federal refunds to local families including $2.3 million in federal Earned Income Tax Credits (EITC) which may have otherwise gone unclaimed.
 
Financial education: Since 2009, the Connecticut Money School (CMS) has provided free financial education targeted to low- and moderate-income adults. With over 6,000 students served to date, CAHS has hosted this program in over 70 locations statewide.  CAHS also has a Youth Money School, which offers financial education for teens and young adults, including workshops on budgeting, credit, and paying for college.  CAHS offers CMS and YMS workshops at the New Haven Opportunity Center and other community locations.
 
Bank On New Haven: CAHS's newest program seeks to link the 18% of New Haven residents who are unbanked with safe and affordable bank accounts, as a path into the financial mainstream.  Four banks with branches in New Haven have accounts that meet National Account Standards, with low monthly fees and no overdraft charges.  CAHS is beginning outreach for this program in 2018. 

State and federal policy advocacy: CAHS has a significant presence and impact in advocacy roles, at both the state and federal levels, as leaders of the Family Economic Success (FES) Network. In 2012, CAHS led the statewide coalition advocating for the adoption of the state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). CAHS produces and disseminates policy briefs and reports regarding policies impacting family economic success, including early care and education, access to higher education, and access to benefits, among others. CAHS is actively involved in the statewide two-generation initiative, which seeks to help young children and their parents together.  To support CAHS’s program and policy work, KIDS COUNT and the Working Poor Families Project produce data and policy briefs on topics such as developmental education.

 
Recent focus areas for our advocacy work include protecting state funding for effective human services programs, promoting innovative "two-generation" strategies that simultaneously benefit young children and their parents, and focusing on race equity--the subject of a recent special KIDS COUNT report.    
Needs

Volunteers are needed throughout the state and receive training and support from staff:

  • Connecticut Money School (CMS) and Youth Money School (YMS)– Volunteer instructors prepare and deliver classroom instruction for up to 30 participants. Topics range from Basic Budgeting to Saving for College. For more information, visit www.cahs.org/youth_money_school.
  • Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) – Volunteers are trained as tax preparers or serve as greeters or savings specialists. VITA sites are located in Fairfield, Litchfield, Middlesex, New Haven, and New London Counties. Please contact contact Gloria Caesar at gcaesar@cahs.org
Financial support is always needed to expand the delivery of services from basic needs outreach to our financial education and empowerment programs. Please contact Robert Blakey at rblakey@cahs.org  
 
Partner organizations are critical to CAHS’s success. We work with local governments, non-profit agencies, businesses and state agencies statewide to administer financial capability programs, build coalitions, and improve outcomes for low-income families. We continually seek new partners and advocates.  Contact Program Director Gloria Caesar at gcaesar@cahs.org  


CEO Statement
The Connecticut Association for Human Services (CAHS) changes the lives of low-income children and families across Connecticut by pioneering new pathways from poverty to opportunity and from financial insecurity to opportunity and success. 
Our focus on both policy and program development attracts leaders and partners from across the public and private sectors.  Working together, we develop and share knowledge, advocate for change, build networks, and mobilize coalitions that equip tens of thousands of Connecticut residents each year with the confidence, support, and personal tools they need to map their journeys forward.
Our goal is, as it has always been, nothing short than the elimination of poverty in Connecticut.  We hope you will join our movement by volunteering, donating, and joining our advocacy network.
 
Board Chair Statement

Our Challenge: National studies show that Connecticut ranks among the best state in the country for policies that support low-income families efforts to work for and achieve financial security.  But Connecticut is near the bottom among states for business creation, income equality, and home ownership by race.  The Connecticut Association for Human Services (CAHS) works to reduce inequities and ensure that all children and families can achieve financial security.

As the Annie E. Casey Foundation's Kids Count grantee, we can see that sometimes we are moving in the wrong direction.  Child poverty has increased 50% since 2000.  While Connecticut is third among all states for the well-being of white and Asian-American children, Connecticut is 12th for African-American children and 24th for Latinos.  We can and must do better.

Our Approach: CAHS is making a difference by fighting for adequate funding for programs and policies that benefits low-income children and families at the State Capitol.  CAHS is a leader on two-generation initiatives, in the community and with state agencies.  We fought to create a state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), and now CAHS takes that out to low-income communities by coordinating the state's largest free tax preparation program, which served more than 15,000 households in 2017.
 
Much more remains to be done.  Our 2017 Kids Count special report, "Race Equity in the Five Connecticuts," documents the huge disparities we know exist in our cities, suburbs, and rural areas.  CAHS is working to build a broad-based network to promote equitable growth in our state.
 
These are only a few examples, but they show what is possible when research, policy development, advocacy, and program development are brought together in a single organization. 
Service Categories
Primary Organization Category Human Services / Alliances & Advocacy
Secondary Organization Category Public & Societal Benefit / Consumer Protection
Tertiary Organization Category Education / Preschools
Areas Served
State wide
New Haven
Hamden
Derby
Milford
Ansonia
Bethany
Branford
East Haven
Guilford
Lower Naugatuck Valley
Shelton
Shoreline
West Haven
Woodbridge
Other
CAHS serves the state of Connecticut with concentrations in Hartford, New Haven, Waterbury, and Fairfield County.  Our work focuses on communities with concentrated poverty and African-American and Latino populations.
CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments CAHS uniquely combines policy and programs that help move low-income children and families from poverty to economic opportunity.  CAHS works closely with a wide variety of organizations in Greater New Haven, especially around free tax preparation, financial education, and access to banking services.  CAHS operates Bank On New Haven, which connects lower-income households to safe and affordable accounts.  CAHS works closely with the City of New Haven on its Financial Empowerment Center, which provides free, professional, one-on-one financial counseling to residents.
Programs
Description

The Connecticut Money School (CMS)  provides free financial education for adults and seniors  We believe that everyone should have the opportunity to become financially independent. We ensure that students receive a high standard of financial education that will help them work towards a prosperous future.

 

CMS is a community-based initiative created to promote economic stability for low to moderate income adults and seniors in Connecticut.  Nearly 100 instructors with financial backgrounds teach our classes. Topics covered include: debt, savings, basic budgeting, credit, loans, health care, homeownership, saving for college, and senior issues (long-term care, retirement, fraud prevention).  We have recently added a Spanish language and online version, covering a broad range of topics.
 
CAHS also operates the Youth Money School, which offers financial education for teens and young adults, including workshops on budgeting, credit and paying for college. 

 

Population Served Adults / Aging, Elderly, Senior Citizens / Families
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service. In the past year, 740 adults received services through CMS and 500 youths received services through the Youth Money School via a network of 40 active volunteers.
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact. Pre- and post-tests. 
Description

Since 2004, CAHS has organized coalitions of VITA sites across the state.  VITA programs provide alternatives to paid and predatory tax preparation in low-income communities. The IRS estimates that federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) filers in Connecticut that used paid preparers pay $273 on average. In addition to paying high fees for tax preparation, the IRS estimates that 20% of those eligible for the EITC do not take advantage of it, leaving millions of dollars in unclaimed credits each year. VITA sites ensure that residents have access to a free tax service that will screen for refunds and tax credits, without offering high interest loans or administrative fees. This service keeps refunds and credits in the hands of low and moderate-income families, and in their communities.

Population Served Families / Adults / Elderly and/or Disabled
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service. In the 2017 tax season, volunteers in New Haven prepared more than 4,500 tax returns, returning $7 million in state and federal refunds to local families including $2.3 million in federal Earned Income Tax Credits (EITC).   
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state. CAHS has administered VITA since 2003.  VITA has grown each year since then, from a few sites in the Bridgeport area, to 58 sites in five counties that will serve more 16,000 filers in five counties in 2018.  Federal refunds will exceed $24 million.  CAHS operates the largest VITA program in the state.  We are expanding asset-building services at the sites, training volunteer "savings specialists," especially at sites in Greater New Haven.
 
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact. IRS and internal program metrics, including surveys of all filers. 
Description CAHS operated the Annie E. Casey Foundation Kids Count project in Connecticut.  Kids Count is a public education and advocacy campaign that provides reliable, comprehensive, timely data and analysis on how well Connecticut’s children are doing at the state and local levels.

Kids Count is known for its positive influence on decision-making and its success in moving important issues into the public arena. By linking data with sound policy analysis, Kids Count makes the case that social, economic, education, and health policies can’t be developed and implemented in isolation, as they have far-reaching effects on the lives of all children across the state. Our analyses demonstrate to policymakers and the public that in order to maintain a healthy Connecticut, we must work to improve family well-being as much as we work to improve the state’s economic well-being.

Kids Count produces a number of publications, including a biennial data book and annual policy briefs and reports that explain the real-life implications of policymakers’ decisions on children and families. Our publications focus on topics about family economic security, health, education, safety, economic development, and workforce education and skill development. 
Population Served / /
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Description Bank On New Haven seeks to serve the 18% of New Haven residents who are unbanked, linking them to safe and affordable accounts.  CAHS works with the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund, which has created National Account Standards that include low monthly fees and no overdraft fees.  CAHS is building a coalition of financial institutions to create and promote these accounts, and to reach out to City residents to enroll.  This will help prevent residents from using costly check cashing services and help them access the financial mainstream.
Population Served Poor,Economically Disadvantaged,Indigent / Immigrant, Newcomers, Refugees / Adults
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state. Long-term success requires engagement of numerous financial institutions offering NAS accounts and building a strong coalition of nonprofit service providers to engage their clients.  Already, four banks in New Haven do, and we hope to attract at least one other bank and one credit union in 2018.  In the long term, we want to bring the percentage of unbanked New Haveners downs from 18 percent to close to the state average of 7%.
Examples of Program SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success. Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund is about to begin a national pilot project with the St. Louis Fed to track data from three banks, and we plan to work with area banks and perhaps the Boston Fed to track data.
Program Comments
CEO Comments
CEO/Executive Director
Mr. Robert A. Blakey
Term Start Sept 2018
Email RBlakey@cahs.org
Experience  

Robert Blakey is Chief Financial Officer and Interim Chief Executive Officer of the Connecticut Association for Human Services, a policy, program, and research organization that works to reduce poverty and build prosperity for children, families, and communities.  CAHS’s family economic security work addresses access to the EITC and other work supports; early care and education; asset-building; workforce education and training; and two-generation strategies. CAHS is an Annie E. Casey Foundation Kids Count grantee and participates in the national Working Poor Families Project. 

                                            

Prior to joining CAHS in 2013, Rob has worked for the US International Trade Commission and the Friendship Service Center of New Britain.  He received a B.A. in Economics from the University of Connecticut, an M.A. in Economics from American University, and an M.S. in Accounting from the University of Connecticut.
Staff
Number of Full Time Staff 7
Number of Part Time Staff 1
Number of Volunteers 600
Number of Contract Staff 1
Staff Retention Rate 75%
Staff Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 2
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 6
Hispanic/Latino 1
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Staff Demographics - Gender
Male 3
Female 6
Unspecified 0
Former CEOs and Terms
NameTerm
Mr. Paul GionfriddoNov 1995 - May 2001
Mr. James P. HoranNov 2001 - Sept 2018
Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Non Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Collaborations
CAHS works closely with more than 100 nonprofit service providers and advocacy organizations across the state, as well as other partners, including colleges, schools, libraries, and others.  Collaboration is critical to our success, and we have formal memoranda of understanding with more than 50 partners for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and more than 30 for the Connecticut Money School, Youth Money School, and one-on-one financial coaching.
Comments
CEO Comments
 
 
Board Chair
Dr. Elsa Núñez Ed.D.
Company Affiliation President, Eastern Connecticut State University
Term Aug 2011 to Dec 2019
Board of Directors
NameAffiliation
Mr. John Cannon
Ms. Karen DuBois-Walton Ph.D
Ms. Mary Kay Fenton
Ms. Merle W. Harris Ed.D.Charter Oak State College, Retired
Mr. Jairo LemosEdward Jones Investments
Ms. Lily LopezCiti Community Development
Mr. Casey McGuane
Ms. Cynthia McKennaCatholic Charities, Archdiocese of Hartford
Ms. Tanya Rhodes Smith
Mr. Kevin Taylor
Ms. Emily Wood
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 2
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 6
Hispanic/Latino 4
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 4
Female 8
Unspecified 0
Risk Management Provisions
Accident and Injury Coverage
Automobile Insurance and Umbrella or Excess Insurance
Blanket Personal Property
Boiler and Machinery
Commercial General Insurance
Commercial General Liability
Commercial General Liability and D and O and Umbrella or Excess and Automobile and Professional
Commercial General Liability and Medical Malpractice
Computer Equipment and Software
Crime Coverage
Directors and Officers Policy
Disability Insurance
Employee Benefits Liability
Employee Dishonesty
Employment Practices Liability
General Property Coverage
General Property Coverage and Professional Liability
Life Insurance
Medical Health Insurance
Professional Liability
Umbrella or Excess Insurance
Workers Compensation and Employers' Liability
Board Co-Chair
N/A
Standing Committees
Executive
Nominating
Finance
Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
Program / Program Planning
 
Financials
Fiscal Year Start July 01 2019
Fiscal Year End June 30 2020
Projected Revenue $984,974.00
Projected Expenses $976,957.00
Spending Policy N/A
Credit Line Yes
Reserve Fund Yes
Detailed Financials
Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities Chart
Fiscal Year201820172016
Total Assets$619,773$1,307,422$1,082,898
Current Assets$528,695$786,973$724,445
Long-Term Liabilities$135,996$588,658$414,001
Current Liabilities$186,054$324,013$335,097
Total Net Assets$297,723$394,751$333,800
Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201820172016
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountHartford Foundation for Public Giving $162,683William Casper Graustein Memorial Fund $298,000William Casper Graustein Memorial Fund $400,000
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountW.K. Kellogg Foundation $147,327W.K. Kellogg Foundation $207,489W.K. Kellogg Foundation $53,842
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountAnnie E. Casey Foundation $100,000Annie E. Casey Foundation $125,000Hartford Foundation for Public Giving $31,461
Capitial Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? No
Comments
Foundation Staff Comments This profile, including the financial summaries prepared and submitted by the organization based on its own independent and/or internal audit processes and regulatory submissions, has been read by the Foundation. Some financial information from the organization’s IRS Form 990, audited financial statements or other financial documents approved has been inputted by Foundation staff. The Foundation has not audited the organization’s financial statements or tax filings, and makes no representations or warranties thereon. A more complete picture of the organization’s finances can be obtained by viewing the attached 990s and audited financials. To see if the organization has received a competitive grant from The Community Foundation in the last five years, please go to the General Information Tab of the profile.
Address 110 Bartholomew Street
Suite 4020
Hartford, CT 06106
Primary Phone 860 951-2212
Contact Email info@cahs.org
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Robert A. Blakey
Board Chair Dr. Elsa Núñez Ed.D.
Board Chair Company Affiliation President, Eastern Connecticut State University

 

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