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Understanding Poverty

Christ Child programs can be life changing for children living in poverty.   Whether responding to a lack of resources, addressing the need for closing the literacy gap or building self-esteem,  CCS programs are impactful because they nurture children individually, help build resiliency, and provide a support network to facilitate social and emotional development that will endure over the child’s life.

CCS can show children that its members are with them on a journey, as 2018 NCCS Convention Keynote Speaker Matthew Deevers (link to Deevers  notes) noted, a journey where success is defined as putting one foot in front of the other, continuing to move in the right direction and becoming the best they can be.

So many children live in poverty.
The needs of today’s children are great and many face significant challenges to becoming well educated and thriving.  In keeping with the vision of Mary Virginia Merrick, it is imperative that CCS considers the status of children today. In one of the wealthiest countries in the world:

  • 13,000 ,000 American children live below the poverty line defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as a median family income of $26,200 for a family of four. *

  • While 18% of our children live in poverty, 27% live in homes where a parent’s employment is insecure or inadequate to consistently provide basic needs,

  • The poverty rate for African American and American Indian kids remains substantially higher — at 33%.

  • 65% of 4th graders are not proficient readers.

*Data from Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Kids Count 2019


Understanding poverty is key to successfully addressing its many challenges. Read More

Matthew Deevers’ Seeds to Trees Seminar
Hidden Rules Exercise
Poverty and Culture Resource List


“Love in the heart of a child for Christ…was the inspiration which gave birth to the Christ Child Society.”

Mary Virginia Merrick, Servant of God

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