posted by Talk About Giving blog team
December 9, 2011 @ 9:00 am
Every so often, we come across a story or statistics specific to the Midlands that just stop us in our tracks. A moment such as this occurred last Sunday when we read this disturbing article in The State regarding poverty in Richland and Lexington Counties. While the article in its entirety is saddening and surprising, what really took us aback were the statistics regarding children right here in our backyard. If you missed the article, we’re sorry to be the one to tell you that about 25 percent of the children attending schools in Richland 1, Lexington 2, 3 and 4 districts live below poverty. Ouch. This reminded of us of another article published this summer that indicated every school in Richland 1 has at least one homeless student.
This is the state of our community and in many cases, in terms of poverty, the state of the world is far worse. We can’t shield our kids from this, and within reason many of us don’t want to. If your kids attend public school in South Carolina, where one in four children go to bed hungry every night, they see it every day. It could be the quiet child sitting next to them in Math class. The big guy on the football team. Your daughter’s lab partner. The girl with the locker next to your son.
These kids are just like yours, their situation is just different. And let’s face it, ‘why it is the way it is’ is very complicated. But there’s a lot we can do to help our children understand how we can help others in need and develop compassionate perceptions on this complicated dilemma.
Chances are good that your children do not go without. In fact, they may live in abundance. We have roofs over our heads that we can count on … food on the table … numerous options for shoes on our feet and clothes in our closets. It’s warm in our homes and there’s gas in the car. So if your family was to live on less money, what could you live without?
Consider a different perspective. Help your children put themselves into someone else’s shoes using the Question of the Week!
Published each Friday, use the Question of the Week to spark conversation with your children about family, money, giving and help them explore what matters most to them.