ABCD Impact

Research and Reports

ABCD produces research, evaluation, and program review reports, as well as occasional papers on a number of topics pertinent to our programming, low-income populations and policy, and service trends. Check out the reports below to learn more.


ABCD Facts and Figures

About ABCD

One page summary providing a brief history of the organization and short overview of the programs and services offered to low-income households

ABCD: Who we Served

One page summary of the demographic characteristics of the 108,850 customers that received services in FY2016

ABCD: By the Numbers

One page summary of the services provided to ABCD customers in FY2016 by service category​

ABCD: Service Network

One page map illustrating the breath of ABCD’s service network in FY2016​


Poverty Research 

Poverty in Greater Boston

Ten page report reviews poverty data in Greater Boston and data of families and individuals that interacted with ABCD in FY2015 to provide an overview on the state of poverty in the community. 

Energy and Fuel Assistance

Struggling to Stay Warm

The Impact of ABCD's Fuel Assistance Program

ABCD administers the Federal Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) for low-income individuals and families living in Boston, Brookline and Newtown with the goals of providing an essential safety net while building family capacity. 

This report lays out the impact of the LIHEAP program for low-income ABCD customers. 


Building a Stable Family Economy:
The Role of ABCD’s Energy Programs​

ABCD, as Boston, Brookline and Newton's LIHEAP service provider is responsible for providing fuel assistance benefits to low-income individuals helping to ensure that they are able to stay warm throughout New England's harsh winter months. 

In 2012, 85% of ABCD’s LIHEAP customers exhausted their allotment of fuel assistance benefits before
the cold weather ended, putting them in danger. Many vulnerable low-income residents of Boston may not know where to turn for help – or
may not be getting the benefits for which they may qualify, either because they are not aware that the
benefits are available or because they do not realize that they are eligible. 

This report lays out ABCD's role in ensuring that all individuals eligible for LIHEAP fuel assistance receive it. 

Elder Services

This report is an evaluation of an innovative community-based intervention – the Food 
Dollars Program. Funded by the AARP Foundation, this program was designed and delivered 
by Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD) and their Elder Services staff in 
order to promote healthy eating and reduce food and economic insecurity among low-income 
elders in Boston.


Click here to read the full report. 

Our Approach

Re-Tooling Work: ARRA Transitional Employment Programs

ARRA funding during 2009 and 2010 enabled ABCD to launch New Careers, an innovative transitional jobs program aimed at giving low-income clients the basic job skills and support services necessary to put them on a career path in high-growth industries like health care, early childhood development, and geriatric care. With a completion rate of 87% and nearly half of graduates obtaining jobs upon completion, New Careers offers important lessons on what low-income clients need to land jobs and move toward self-sufficiency.  Take a look at Re-Tooling Work to learn more about this program, its impacts, and how we’re building on its success.

ARRA Interim Report

Funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act enabled ABCD to expand services and resources for low-income Boston families through new and enhanced programming in 2009 and 2010. Check out this interim report covering all except the last quarter of ARRA programming to see what we accomplished and how the "stimulus package" affected our city's neediest.

Place-Based Initiatives in Boston

This report reviews the various place-based initiatives emerging in and around Boston and provides some background on this trend and the goals of programming that serves people where they live.

Youth Programs

2014 SummerWorks Annual Report

ABCD helps low-income youth prepare
for college and work through its signature SummerWorks program. During the school year, youth can also participate in the Career Explorations program, which introduces them to
career fields and job skills that teach the importance of work, contribute to family income and stability, and encourage
both personal and professional growth. WinterWorks offers an afterschool employment opportunity for youth who would otherwise have no income opportunity.

2013 SummerWorks Report

SummerWorks is Action for Boston Community Development, Inc.’s summer jobs program, serving Boston’s low-income youth.  SummerWorks provides a pathway into the world of work for youth from Boston’s poorest households. There are no jobs for these young people in their neighborhoods—but they want to work. SummerWorks gives them a chance. Last year, ABCD could put 841 youth to work—but more than three times that many were turned away, due to lack of funds.

2011 SummerWorks Report

SummerWorks is one of ABCD’s longest-running and most successful programs that provides hands-on employment experience, life skill training, and academic and case management support to at-risk youth across Boston. In 2011, over 1,160 youth were employed at more than 160 partner worksites in every Boston neighborhood and earned more than $900K in wages to support their families. To learn more about ABCD Summerworks and its 2011 season, check out the report!

University High School Annual Report: 2010-2011

One of two alternative high schools operated by ABCD, University High School provides rigorous academic programming, supportive services, and a pathway to graduation, college, and work for many at-risk youth. Take a look at the Annual Report to learn more about UHS, its students, and what innovations lie ahead.

Ostiguy High School Annual Report: 2010-2011

One of only three Recovery High schools in Massachusetts, Ostiguy High serves youth who are recovering from substance abuse through supportive services, clinical care, and rigorous academics that enable them to graduate and move on to college and career. Take a look at the annual report to learn more about Ostiguy High, its unique structure, and how it has changed the lives of recovering youth.

Money Management

Asset Development Annual Report

ABCD's Asset Development Department, also known as the Financial Futures Initiative, provides low-income families with the financial management skills to mange their money, build savings, and leverage their assets to purchase a first home, attend college, or realize the dream of opening a small business. Take a look at this report or learn more about this department's work and impact.

Workforce Development


BRICC Program Review

ABCD’s Building Real Careers in Construction (BRICC) program was launched in 2008 with generous support from the US Department of Labor’s Women in Non-Traditional Occupations (WANTO) grant program. Designed to help low-income women break into construction fields and gain union membership, BRICC offered nearly 130 women hands-on building trades training, professional development instruction, and apprentice and union application and membership guidance. To learn more about BRICC and its enrollees, check out the program review!

Head Start

Head Start Annual Report: 2011-2012

Head Start is Boston’s high-quality school readiness program for low-income children ages 0-5 and their families and of the core programs at Action for Boston Community Development, Inc. (ABCD), Boston’s anti-poverty Community Action Agency. Founded in part by the War on Poverty in 1965, Head Start is intended to close the academic and development gap between children growing up in low-income communities and their peers with the theory that strong and healthy children are the product of strong families and communities.  Take a look at this report and learn more about how Head Start transforms lives.


Archived Annual Reports

2013 Annual Report: Together We Make It Possible

50th Anniversary Gala & 2011 Annual Report