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Posts Tagged ‘poverty’

SIRS Discoverer Spotlight of the Month: National Poverty in America Awareness Month

On January 8, 1964, President Lyndon Johnson introduced War on Poverty legislation in his annual State of the Union address. He emphasized improved education as one of the foundations of the program. On August 20, 1964, he signed a $947.5 million antipoverty bill that was intended to help more than 30 million U.S. citizens.

Signing of the EOA

LBJ Signing Economic Opportunity Act of 1964
By US Government (LBJ Library) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

National Poverty in America Awareness Month promotes knowledge and understanding of the realities of poverty in the United States. According to the U. S. Census Bureau in 2015, more than 43 million Americans–13.5 percent of the population–lived in poverty. Reasons are complex and multifaceted and the effects on the nation are immense.

Building in Odessa, Minnesota

Building in Odessa, Minnesota
Photo by Greg Gjerdingen via flickr is licensed under CCA-SA 2.0 Generic

January’s Discoverer Spotlight of the Month explores the issue poverty in the United States. Use this month as an opportunity to examine poverty and perhaps even get involved in local anti-poverty campaigns. Direct your students to featured articles, images and websites to understand the many causes and ramifications of poverty. Dig deeper by researching the devastating Great Depression and the current impact of poverty on youth and families. Explore the Pro/Con Leading Issues: Poverty page as it highlights content for young researchers.

For more in-depth information:
Poverty USA
National Center for Children in Poverty (NCCP)
Talk Poverty

National Poverty in America Awareness Month

January is National Poverty in America Awareness Month. Poverty is not an easy topic to talk about—especially with children. It can be a scary topic for young minds and hearts, as any discussion of poverty also means considering the hunger, cold, homelessness, and fear that may accompany it. But with millions of Americans living in poverty, it is an issue worth addressing.

Once students learn about poverty and how it affects many Americans, they may become inspired to help. What can they do to make a difference?

Volunteers at Daily Bread Food Bank<br /> by Photographer Mitchel Raphael on Flickr licensed under CC BY 2.0 [Public Domain]

Volunteers at Daily Bread Food Bank
by Photographer Mitchel Raphael on Flickr licensed under CC BY 2.0 [Public Domain]

You may want to introduce them to young activist Zach Bonner. While an elementary-school student in 2009, he walked 668 miles from Atlanta, Georgia, to Washington, D.C. to raise awareness about homeless children. He raised tens of thousands of dollars to help kids living in poverty. Pretty inspirational!

Or talk with them about Ava Kuslansky, who helps collect food from restaurants and grocery stores and distribute it to homeless people in her city. Or Katy Ross, who joined a food-assistance organization that helps feed hungry people breakfast. Each of these kids has worked to make a difference in the lives of people struggling with poverty.

There are many organizations that reach out and provide assistance to homeless and hungry Americans, such as the Salvation Army and Blessings in a Backpack. Teach your students about these groups and their histories.

Educating kids about the social benefits and personal significance of helping others is just one of the valuable lessons that can be taught during National Poverty in America Awareness Month. Visit SIRS Discoverer during the month of January to find articles, Web sites, photos, and more about the poverty in America and what people and organizations are doing to help.

50 Years Later: Remembering the War on Poverty

SIRS Issues Researcher values historical research and remembrance. That’s why poverty is such an important issue affecting past and present-day economic discussions.

"Lyndon Johnson." Photo credit: Cushing Memorial Library and Archives, Texas A&M / Foter / CC BY

“Lyndon Johnson.” Photo credit: Cushing Memorial Library and Archives, Texas A&M / Foter / CC BY

Fifty years ago today, Lyndon B. Johnson declared a War on Poverty  (1964-1968). With his declaration came a slew of legislative improvements he signed and designed to prevent poverty and lift the economy.  Job Corps, the Office of Economic Opportunity, Welfare Reform and Earned Income Tax Credit were just some of the efforts put forth by president Johnson to help struggling families. The “Great Society,” which emerged as the 36th president’s running theme for the late 1960s, encompassed the heart of his good intentions.

Detracting from his American vision and economic efforts was the Vietnam War (1959 — April 30, 1975). During the Vietnam War, troops became angry and resentful, often turning to drugs. They were unprepared for the dangerous ambushes in the jungle of the Viet Cong. The Vietnam War later proved to be a prominent symbol of what not to do in wartime because of the disorganization, length of time overseas and expense. After the war was over, Americans had a very different perspective on what mattered to them most at home.

Fifty years later, poverty is still a problem. The impoverished and working poor still look to the government for aid, while middle and upper class earnings get stretched apart more each year. Economic inequality is prevalent throughout the U.S. and minimum wage rarely gets increased.

Kickstart a research paper on the war on poverty by browsing for inspiration from Drawing the Line or the Poverty Timeline. Utilize the keyword search for finding graphics and websites. A streamlined design and user-friendly navigation menu make searching SIRS Issues Researcher simple.

Educational Web Sites

ProQuest editors daily curate educational web sites for SIRS products that are relevant, credible, reliable and appropriate to students.

Screencap of Albert Einstein site, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

In this addition of Featured Web Sites, editors highlight resources in social studies, science and the arts including poetry:

Albert Einstein

From Ideas to Independence

Mind the Gap

Ocean Tracks

Poetry Foundation

War on Poverty

Find SIRS editorial-selected web sites in the search results for SIRS Discoverer and SIRS Issues Researcher. Also see the Featured Web Sites section of SIRS WebSelect.

SKS Spotlight: National Poverty in America Awareness Month

Homeless Person on Street <br \> by HUD News via ProQuest SIRS Government Reporter [Public Domain]

Homeless Person on Street
by HUD News via ProQuest SIRS Government Reporter [Public Domain]

National Poverty in America Awareness Month promotes knowledge and understanding of the realities of poverty in the United States. In 2012, more than 46 million Americans–15 percent of the population–lived in poverty. Reasons are complex and multifaceted; the effects on the nation immense.

January’s SKS Spotlight of the Month explores poverty in United States. Click on featured articles to learn about the many causes of poverty, its impact on the nation’s youth, and the controversial federal programs attempting to alleviate the burdens of the nation’s poor. Dig deeper into the issue of poverty and its history in the United States by researching the devastating Great Depression or the inspirational Salvation Army. National Poverty in America Awareness Month provides an opportunity to examine poverty and perhaps even get involved in anti-poverty campaigns.