Friday, December 5, 2008

View of Poverty

After more than three years of nomadic uncertainty, many of the children of Hurricane Katrina are behind in school, acting out and suffering from extraordinarily high rates of illness and mental health problems. Their parents, many still anxious or depressed themselves...

Many Children Lack Stability Long After Storm

Ms. Bankston has particularly grave concerns about the children who have fallen so far behind in school that there is little chance of their catching up. “What you’re looking at is our future juvenile justice, our prison population,” she said.

Many of the adults are at least partly victims of their own poor choices. But the children are another matter.

From several plastic baggies and a dented metal canister, the family could barely amass the documents needed to prove his address.

A shy, artistic boy ..., Jermaine is one of tens of thousands of youngsters who lost not just all of their belongings to Hurricane Katrina, but a chunk of childhood itself.

Quotes taken from Many Children Lack Stability Long After Storm

I remember growing up thinking that most people who are poor are that way because of laziness or because of their own decisions and choices. Then, a few years ago I read a booklet by Dr. Tim Kellar that provided biblical descriptions (and if I remember right - statistics) regarding the reasons many found themselves in poverty and was shocked to learn that those catagorized by my previous way of thinking were actually a small portion of the overall amount, many being affected by natural disasters, physical disabilities, compound emergencies, poor foundations, etc.

I am grateful to Shaila Dawan for this this article and post on this for three reasons: 1) To draw reader's attention to the article and the various needs and ways to continue to help on the coast. 2) To help others not be as wrong and naive as I was growing up in my thinking about poverty, and 3) To highlight the details in the article that help paint a good picture of all the different kinds of factors that can contribute to the present and future states of individuals and families especially if out of love others do not come to their aid and support and provide for them.

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