About PACT

Mission

PACT‘s mission is to empower everyday people to create a more healthy and just society by winning extraordinary victories for the community - not by speaking for them, but by teaching people how to speak up and take action in the public arena through grass roots organizing.

Founded in 1985, People Acting in Community Together is an inter-faith, grassroots organization that  provides leadership training and experience to community members of many ethnic, religious, and socio-economic backgrounds. Through PACT, people work together to solve the most pervasive social problems of our day, including:

  • Failing public schools;
  • Housing that is too expensive for thousands of working families;
  • Lack of affordable health care;
  • Diminishing services and funding for our ever-growing senior population;
  • Unsafe neighborhoods and poor services.

PACT is an affiliate of the PICO National Network, one of the largest grassroots community organizations in the United States, representing more than 1,000 religious congregations, schools, and neighborhood institutions and 1,000,000 families in 150 cities and towns. PACT also works with its 20 sister organizations in PICO California on common statewide issues to improve housing, education and health care for all people.

PICO and its affiliates are non-partisan and are not aligned explicitly or implicitly with any candidate or party. We do not endorse or support candidates for office.

"In these days of political apathy, PACT’s hundreds of volunteers are a ray of hope. They are living proof that each one of us can make a positive, real difference. This is democracy in action!"

- Susan Packard Orr, President of the Board, The David & Lucile Packard Foundation and CEO, Telosa Software 

Method

Through grassroots community organizing, PACT trains hundreds of volunteer leaders to:

  • have substantive conversations with their neighbors and members their community to prioritize problems;
  • conduct research on the causes of and potential solutions to those problems;
  • negotiate solutions with public officials; and
  • establish long-term accountability with elected officials.

PACT develops “social capital” – the relationships between people beyond their close friends and family – that is the hallmark of a healthy community.

PACT challenges its leaders to listen to the concerns and ideas of their neighbors and fellow congregants through individual one-to-one meetings, house meetings and listening campaigns.  As a result, PACT leaders establish a broad following and choose issues that matter most to their communities.  

As such, PACT member congregations choose the campaigns on which they focus and support. Through this process, congregations explore issues that might be new to their congregation and to PACT and can collaborate with other PACT congregations working on similar issues.

PACT member congregations have Local Organizing Committees (LOC's) of volunteer, grassroots leaders who learn and work together with the following values:

  • Shared Leadership – All active volunteers are called “leaders” and treated as the term implies.
  • Praxis – Leaders are constantly encouraged to do things they have never done before and then reflect on what they learned in the process of doing so.
  • Discipline – PACT meetings are run by trained volunteer leaders, who seek to run them in a timely, orderly, efficient way.
  • Relationships – High value is placed upon building a broad network of relationships in congregations and in neighborhoods around Silicon Valley.