January is National Poverty in America Awareness Month, and the most recent data indicates that 40.6 million people in the United States live in poverty. Poverty is linked to myriad negative effects, such as hunger and food insecurity, low academic performance, and homelessness.
Dire financial hardships are on the rise in Indianapolis with 1 in 5 Indianapolis residents living in poverty. It’s an issue that increasingly demands the attention and action of the entire community. Luckily, there are organizations throughout Indianapolis dedicated to addressing all facets of this critical issue.
The first step to solving a problem is understanding it. Here are some helpful resources to help frame your understanding of poverty.
- Learn more about Indianapolis’ growing poverty in Hayleigh Columbo’s May 2018 IBJ article, “1 in 5 Indianapolis residents lives in poverty. And many areas are getting worse.”
- Explore the Poverty Risk Calculator, discussion guide, and resource tools for understanding economic hardship and risk at Confronting Poverty.
- Examine the poverty guidelines set by the Department of Health and Human Services and considerthe obstacles for living at the poverty thresholds for families of different sizes.
- Check out Out of Reach to learn how much you need to earn to afford a modest apartment in your state.
Poverty is an overwhelming and complicated issue. Fortunately, Indianapolis is full of organizations committed to alleviating the effects of poverty. Whether you are an individual, corporation or a group of friends looking to make an impact with some of the most vulnerable within our city, there are lots of places to get involved. Poverty is a crisis that requires support from the entire community.
- Alleviating food insecurity: Second Helpings and Gleaners are just a few of the wonderful
organizations focused on feeding people in our city with volunteer opportunities.
- Improving academic success: School on Wheels volunteer tutors dedicate one hour each week to transform the lives of children impacted by homelessness at 14 sites around Indianapolis. Tutor with us
- Addressing homelessness: CHIP (Coalition for Homelessness Intervention and Prevention) drives a system-wide, community response to make homelessness rare, short-lived, and recoverable in Indianapolis. Learn more about volunteer opportunities with CHIP.
At School on Wheels, we are dedicated to breaking the cycle of homelessness through education, and helping hundreds of Indianapolis children meet critical academic milestones alongside their housed peers. Our mission would not be possible without community support. Check in with us on our social channels; you can find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.