There is no reason to sugarcoat the truth: the world is in chaos. From Israel to Ukraine to the South China Sea, there seems to be an endless number of issues plaguing the world and challenging U.S. leadership. However, while the conflicts across the globe dominate the media and captivate the attention of citizens and policymakers across the world, there is a burgeoning problem here at home: childhood poverty.

Childhood poverty is not something that will galvanize the electorate nor gain the attention of the mainstream media, yet that does not make it any less serious of an issue. In the United States, the wealthiest and most powerful nation ever to exist, childhood poverty has reached record highs. While many may question how that is possible — if they acknowledge the issue exists — we, as a people, need to confront this challenge head on. 

First, let’s look at the data according to the U.S. Census Bureau, which shows the number of children living in poverty in the United States doubled in 2022 — which is the biggest increase on record.


That brings the total number to roughly 9 million children. How did we get here as a nation? Well, when you look at the fatherhood crisis, economic turmoil and failing education system in this country, the answer becomes clear. 

The fatherhood crisis plaguing this nation is one that is having damaging effects on families — and, indirectly, childhood poverty — in our country. For example, nearly 18.5 million children grow up without their fathers. 

Not only is fatherhood essential for the development of children, but data shows also that children who grow up without their fathers have sizable decreases in academic performance in school, a lower likelihood of economic stability and lower opportunity at social mobility.

Therefore, it is not a stretch by any means to suggest that the lack of two-parent households with a father at the top has a negative effect on not only child development, but also increases the likelihood that a child will be raised in poverty. 

However, it is not just the fatherhood crisis augmenting the increase in childhood poverty. Other factors such as the economic turmoil affecting this country are having devastating effects on households across the nation. The rise in daily costs for families is crushing them with data showing that the typical American household is paying over $700 more in goods and services than they would have two years ago.

Many scholars concur that the record rise in childhood poverty — after being cut to a historic low of roughly 5% — coincided with the rise in inflation. Moreover, some on the left are suggesting that the sunsetting of the childhood tax credit was responsible for the rise in poverty, yet this itself is a misnomer.

In fact, a childhood tax credit extension would have devastating effects as it would further remove incentives for people to work and bulwark the inflationary paradigm currently ravaging the United States. 


Lastly, there is an educational system disaster that is destroying families. While admittingly a more long-term issue, the effects can be felt in communities across the country. For example, look at Black students in Los Angeles today, where 80% of them cannot read or write proficiently at grade level.

Some might suggest that this damaging statistic was exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, yet that would be ignorant of the fact that the policies leading to this situation have been firmly rooted in many of these school districts for decades. As a result, you have neighborhoods where not only folks struggle with basic arithmetic and reading, but they also struggle with financial literacy, furthering increasing childhood poverty rates. 

So, the question remains, what can we do? At The Jack Brewer Foundation we are not only dedicated to increasing awareness about this growing problem, but also doing something about it. From feeding 5,000 children on a daily basis, delivering hundreds of thousands of pounds of food for struggling families, to donating thousands of sets of clothing: our objectives are clear.

In order to address this issue, it will take not only a chorus of voices, but a congregation of men and women dedicated to living Christ’s mission. While we have had some success throughout all levels of government — such as a record level grant from the state of Florida to address the fatherhood crisis — there is still much to be done. 

I call on you all to adhere to the word of the Lord as said in James 1:22 “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” Only then can we look to save our children and therefore our future.