Supporting Single MothersRich Stigall
Caring for kids in the US, often means caring for parents in the US.
One of the leading risk factors for abuse or neglect of children is simply being in a single parent home. Lower incomes, increased stress due to the burden of family responsibilities, and a smaller network of family and friends are thought to be some of the underlying factors. It’s estimated that 35% of the children in the US live in single parent homes. But, 51% of the children and youth in Kansas City live with a single parent. The vast majority of these homes are single mother homes.
I recently asked an attorney with over 20 years of experience working with cases of abuse and neglect in an affluent suburb in KC if he could recall a situation in which the state had removed children from the care of an involved father. He couldn’t think of a single case. “If the dad is involved and actively caring for his kids, those kids don’t come to us. It’s when dad is gone, abusive, or unwilling to change his lifestyle for the sake of his children that we will see his kids enter the system.”
That simple statement helped me understand why the word “fatherless” and “orphan” are interchangeable throughout Scripture.
At GO Project, we seek to support single mothers in the countries we work to be engaging with local churches and local Christians to create opportunities for their employment through The GO Exchange, through retreats, and events.
By helping single mothers earn money, share the load of stress, and have a broader network of relationships, we can see the church live into its responsibility to become a Family when Family fails.
In that same spirit, we are partnering with Macedonia Baptist Church, The Single Mom KC, and K-Love to celebrate single moms at an event on October 3rd, 2014 here in KC. You can learn more by checking out this video:
If you are in the KC Metro area, consider signing up to volunteer. It would be a tangible way to step into James 1:27 through the lens of caring for the modern day widow and the fatherless child here in our midst.