I have so many friends who are parents currently and although I am not a parent myself, I know how hard parenting is. It's not something that comes with a handbook, which is often something you hear many say as they embark on the journey of parenthood.

You hear scenarios where many have to live below the normal means of living in order to be able to provide for their families, no matter what the situation may be. That is called living in poverty -- the state of one who lacks a usual or socially acceptable amount of money or material possessions. Poverty is said to exist when people lack the means to satisfy their basic needs.

Unfortunately, poverty in our world is no surprise. But, what may surprise you is that it hits so close to home. One Central New York city has been ranked number one in the entire nation for childhood poverty.

According to the latest data from the U.S. Census Bureau, Syracuse is now ranked number one for the highest childhood poverty in the country.

The latest data from the Census Bureau shows that nearly half of kids under the age of 18 are living in poverty in Syracuse. The poverty rate has surpassed every other city with at least 100,000 people in them, including places like Detroit and Cleveland. Two upstate cities ranked closely behind Syracuse: Rochester at #2 and Buffalo at #6.

And when you think about it, that’s close to 15,000 children in the city.

The Census Bureau says a family of four living in poverty makes an annual income of less than $26,246. The median household income in Syracuse is $38,893.

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What Can I Do To Help?

According to LocalSyr, these are the best ways to help the Syracuse area:

  • United Way of Central New York has been giving back to the community for 100 years. Their robust list of volunteer opportunities will connect you to all sorts of organizations across Central New York working to help those in need. To find out where to volunteer or donate visit their website, here.
  • You can also visit the Human Services Leadership Council of Central New York at for a list of organizations that need your help.

What Can I Do If My Family Needs Help?

According to LocalSyr, these are the best ways to get help in the Syracuse area:



  • Call 211. This free service connects callers to critical health and human services in their community. You can receive help finding housing, food, transportation, jobs, health care, and more. You can also find the same information online, here.
  • For a list of organizations providing critical services to those in need in Central New York visit the Human Services Leadership Council of Central New York.

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