The mission of the Material Aid and Advocacy Program (MAAP) is to support and empower community members experiencing homelessness or living in poverty, through material aid, access to resources, and advocacy opportunities. Working with homeless community members and allies, we seek systemic solutions that address the root causes of homelessness, poverty, and inequality.
History & Philosophy
The Material Aid and Advocacy Program (MAAP) began as a program of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) in 1944 to meet the need of those who had been displaced and were in dire material need during World War II. Clothing, household goods, hygienic, and hospital supplies were collected, mended, and sent to sites internationally. AFSC’s hope was that once emergency aid was provided further social justice work could get underway. In 2004, MAAP re-focused to solely support our local neighbors in need.
Over 70 years later, MAAP continues to fulfill the mission of what was known as the Emergency Material Aid program (EMAP). By addressing immediate needs and providing material support to the community members we serve, we build connections and mutual respect. MAAP’s relationships are foundational to our ability to engage side-by-side with program participants in advocacy, public education, and organizing work. We are guided by their voices and experiences, to improve their immediate situations, seek long-term solutions to homelessness, and address the systemic causes of homelessness, poverty, and inequality. Together, we are developing and working towards a shared vision of a world where houses are for shelter and not for profit, and, where our communities are stabilized and revitalized for those living there, and not for those who can pay more in rent and push them out. And where no one will be without safe and stable housing, and if they are it is for a brief time during which they treated with dignity and respect.
For 73 years, MAAP’s work was done as a program of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC). On October 1, 2017 MAAP became an independent organization, with a temporary fiscal sponsorship from the Friends Meeting at Cambridge. On August 13, 2018 we received our 501(c)3 designation from the IRS.