MCSA, a non-profit organization, was established in 1991 to help meet the social needs of the Muscatine area.
A group of private citizens was determined to keep the 35 dorm-style rooms on the second floor of the YMCA available for single men in need. The late Richard Maeglin purchased the building with the intention that it might become a center for strategic action within the community. The building was originally referred to as the “Heart of Hearts,” then Muscatine Center for Strategic Action, and is now called Muscatine Center for Social Action.
MCSA was formed to make a difference in the quality of life in Muscatine. Specifically, the following unmet needs were identified: housing, poverty, family/domestic violence, barriers to service availability, substance use, and discrimination.
Since its inception, MCSA has continuously worked to establish programs and lay the groundwork for improving lives in the Muscatine area. Early programs and activities included: housing for single men, the Fine Arts Academy, Muscatine Center, a clothing closet, a Saturday meal site, the site of Muscatine Community College GED and ESL classes, opening the transitional family shelter, selling and relocating houses after the 1993 flood, and housing development on Muscatine’s west side.
Later in 2000, MCSA narrowed its mission to focus on providing services that would tangibly improve the quality of life of those it serves. As adapted in 2000, the mission was “to provide emergency and temporary shelter, basic health care, and educational and vocational support services for those in need in Muscatine County.” The programs and projects of the 1990s and early 2000s were refocused on the mission of helping Muscatine-area homeless get back on their feet through the expansion of case management, along with a focus on skill development and personal responsibility.
In 2005, the Muscatine Pediatric Dental Clinic opened to meet the need for an affordable dental clinic. In 2009, MCSA opened the MCSA Vision Care Clinic, staffed by local volunteer optometrists under the direction of Dr. Peter Korpi. In 2011, MCSA created systemized programming around homeless prevention.
The Muscatine Domestic Violence Shelter was added to the organization in 2014. This shelter assists those who are fleeing domestic violence.
In 2017, the mission was changed to "MCSA provides housing, basic health care, educational and support services for those in need in Muscatine County."
MCSA is poised to continue to fulfill its founders’ original intent, to meet unmet needs within our community, and will continue to evolve and serve.
Enjoy our 25th Anniversary video highlighting past leaders & friends.
Katie Kelly, Program Director
Karen Heap, Finance Director
Nik Horn, Resource Development Officer
Mikel Plank, Facilities Manager
Judy Yates, Domestic Violence Shelter Manager
Rob Hillman, Project Rise Above Manager
Austin Lovstad, Food Pantry Coordinator
Teresa Cardoza, Property Manager