Collaboration with community partners in the South Bend area is a vital part of the Center for Social Concerns (CSC). The CSC maintains relationships with more than 50 local organizations, and has formalized relationships with eight community organizations, which are called Community-Based Learning Coordinators organizations. The Center was influential in the creation of the Robinson Community Learning Center in 2001 in the northeast neighborhood of South Bend, just south of the campus.

When Notre Dame undergraduates enroll in community-based learning courses, the Center often facilitates their placements with area organizations where their contributions are requested. The CSC also assists local organizations that have research needs to connect with students, graduate students, and faculty who are interested in community-based research opportunities.

The Center helps students, faculty, and other University constituents find non-curricular service, advocacy, community organizing, and other means of becoming engaged locally in addressing social concerns. The Center also identifies and provides various forms of support for the social concerns commissioners from each residence hall, who facilitate community engagement and education about social concerns. In addition, the Center offers space and other forms of support for more than 40 student service and social action groups involved in service, advocacy, and education related to social concerns locally.