Families in our community face the harsh realities of poverty daily. From food insecurity, housing instability, and a lack of access to basic things for children like recreational opportunities, transportation and more make it increasingly challenging for isolated moms to maintain families that are safe, stable and secure.
For families that have been entrenched in poverty for more than two generations, their daily focus is on surviving. With each day bringing new, urgent challenges, moving from surviving into a place where they can plan for the future seems virtually impossible. As a result, prioritizing things that could lift the family out of poverty, like education and health, become increasingly difficult.
The demands of poverty pit daily needs against one another: food against housing, heating against transportation. For children, this insecurity is acutely felt. Often, our moms must forego opportunities for their children like sports and outdoor play, safe transportation, the development of literacy skills, and healthy eating in order to just get by.
The majority of moms we work with have not had the advantage of growing up in healthy families that modelled the kind of parenting that they want for their children. Without mothers, sisters, aunts and neighbours they can look up to for guidance and support, moms are often isolated as they try to learn how to feed, teach and raise their children with no roadmap or positive experience to reflect on.
lack of trust
For many moms living in poverty, the persistent threat of losing their children to the government's foster care system is all too real. For some of them, the Mom2Mom volunteer they are paired with may be the first unpaid person in their life who is helping out of a sense of compassion, not obligation, and who also doesn’t have any power over her to remove her children.