Child Poverty on the Rise
Child poverty is a serious problem in the United States, and it’s worse than most people think. Nearly half of all children in our country are living near the poverty line, according to new research from Columbia University. Fully 21% of all children live at or below the poverty threshold, while another 22% live in households that have an income below 200% of the poverty level. This second category is important because research suggests that a household income of at least two times the poverty level is necessary for families with children to adequately meet their most basic needs. Together these numbers show just how vulnerable America’s children are. Even more concerning, it appears that these poverty rates are only getting worse. Child poverty today is 18% higher than it was in 2008 when 39% of children were considered low-income. The situation is the most severe for the youngest children; 47% of children age 5 or younger are in families that struggle to make ends meet. The effects of poverty on children can be disastrous, including issues like food insecurity, unsafe housing, toxic stress, isolation, poor health, and social and emotional problems. All of the Claretian Initiative’s programs serve at-risk children and families in high-poverty communities throughout the United States. The Bread of Life Food Pantry works to make sure all families in their New Jersey community consistently have enough food on the table, while Little Ones Preschool helps low-income kids in suburban Atlanta get better prepared for kindergarten and beyond. Still, much more needs to be done to fight child poverty. Consider making a donation to the program of your choice today to help all kids have a chance to thrive. 95% of all donations go directly to programs.