Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts


This thesis has several components. Its review of antipoverty literature leads-in to a theoretical perspective of the causes, effects, and remediation of poverty in the United States. A small minority of powerful individuals and corporations who monopolize decision- making apparatuses consistently make decisions which nurture unjust, inequitable allocations of the nation's resources. As they protect their vested interests, the socio- economic and political systems which perpetuate the gross economic imbalance between rich and poor are nurtured . The poor (and increasingly , the middle class) are left virtually powerless, even over the decisions which affect their own lives.

In order to explore various approaches to poverty, a survey of 65 agencies was conducted . It studies the goals, scope, modus operandi, staffing, funding, eligibility requirements, and other features of primarily nonprofit organizations. These agencies play a vital role in the reduction of poverty. They provide material aid, crisis intervention, advocacy, and supportive relationships to the poor. Their services are a partial solution to the problem of poverty , but the sheer volume of clients acts as a deterrent to their effectiveness. They cannot continue the struggle against poverty alone.