Happy Birthday Project NOW

May 14, 2018

A long fight against poverty in the Quad Cities is being celebrated this week. Tuesday is the 50th birthday of Project NOW which provides services in Rock Island, Henry, and Mercer counties.

Executive Director, Mo Hart, says her staff of 130 people helps about 12,000 households a year, or about 25,000 people.

"Everything from Head Start - educating children to attend kindergarten, preparing 3 to 5 year olds for kindergarten - to senior services such as delivering home-delivered means, senior transport, and we also weatherize homes."

The agency was created during the turmoil of the 1960's, in fact just one month after the assassination of Martin Luther King Junior. And the name "now" stands for Neighborhood Outreach Work."

Hart says it's mission probably won't change much in the coming years. 

"How you provide the service might change, technology certainly changes things, but the basic needs of people, when that flares up, they need people who can listen to them, meet with them face to face. We still put a priority on that."

 Project NOW is one of nearly 1,000 Community Action Agencies across the country, offering programs for affordable housing, utility assistance, clothing, and meal sites and meals on wheels.