Why Winter Break is Not a Break for Everyone

Remember that last week of school in December, anxiously awaiting your winter break, tapping your pencil on your desk, staring at the clock, each minute feeling like an hour? And then the bell rings, and there it is, sweet freedom. You run for your backback, thinking of all of the fun things you will do for the next few weeks; stockings filled with candy, sleeping in, visiting friends or family, no homework, turkey and fixings on the table, your mom's pecan pie. 

Not every child has this winter break experience. For many, school provides shelter and food for them that they would otherwise note receive. For many children facing food insecurity or living in poverty, or who are homeless or all of the above, winter break is stressful and many times scary. This unstable environment can be exhausting and very difficult to adjust back from when school reconvenes after the new year. Education = power. Many don't know there are so many youth facing these conditions in our country let alone our community. 1 in 5 children in U.S. are living below the poverty line. You may have seen the story recently featured by NPR recently in an article written by Meg Anderson, discussing the affects of this transition and the challenges both students and teachers face.

'Living in poverty is often stressful, with families grappling to find the next meal, a warm place to sleep or quality child care. Those experiences, repeated over and over again, can actually change a child's brain.
Chronic stress can inhibit a child's ability to manage his or her behavior, says Ross Thompson, a University of California, Davis professor who studies child social-emotional development. It can also affect language and memory skills." (How To Help Kids In Poverty Adjust To The Stability Of School After Break - Meg Anderson, Npr.org)

It is for this very reason, so many the our organizations we partner with exist. This is why they work daily to reach these youth in need, to give them the food, shelter, medical care, education, mentors, and teachers to make them feel safe, healthy, and happy.

View our 14 beneficiary charities here.


View "How to Help Kids In Poverty Adjust To The Stability Of School After Break - Meg Anderson: npr.org 

Published on Friday, January 15, 2016