There's a new phrase that is being used to describe today's kids. They are being called Generation R...Children of the Recession. The recession has affected kids across the country.
Recent stats show that...
- Over 1.5 million children are homeless.
- Over 16.7 million children are hungry.
- 1 in 9 children are living with an unemployed parent.
- 31 percent of the unemployed are parents.
- Over 2 million children have had their lives disrupted by foreclosure. Children who have to switch schools due to foreclosure are 77 percent more likely to develop behavioral problems in their new schools and 20 percent more likely to show violent behavior.
- The number of children living in poverty has risen 33% since 2000.
Here's more from a special CBS report that aired.
What should be our response as Children's Ministries? How can we minister to kids and families who are in the midst of this recession?
- Watch for kids and parents who are being affected by the recession. Kids are very honest. They will usually tell you when their family is having a tough time. Many times it is when they are sharing prayer requests.
- Listen to their story. When going through tough financial times, kids and families will most likely experience increased stress, tension, and arguing in their home. They need someone who will listen to their story with empathy and compassion.
- Encourage them. Many times kids and families will feel like their life is unraveling all around them. Encourage them with God's promises and affirmation.
- Provide assistance. Provide financial assistance as you are able. Paying some utility bills, creating a food pantry, giving leads for job connections, and even providing school supplies is a big help.
- Pray with and for kids and parents. Pray for provision. Pray for job. Pray for patience. Pray for their faith to remain strong and even grow during the time of need.
- Secure more scholarships for church activities that cost such as camp, events, etc.
- Partner with adult ministries to provide classes for parents on finances, budgeting, steps to take during a recession, etc.
How has the recession affected kids and families in your ministry? What are some more ways we can effectively minister to Generation R and their families?
Posted by Dale Hudson