KOMU 8 viewers show poverty has many faces

3 years 1 month 6 days ago Wednesday, December 10 2014 Dec 10, 2014 Wednesday, December 10, 2014 2:17:00 PM CST December 10, 2014 in Poverty
By: Annie Hammock, KOMU 8 Interactive Director

COLUMBIA - Many roads lead to poverty and the people who travel those roads each have a unique story to share.

Viewer responses to a KOMU 8 News poll on poverty showed there is no single, simple definition of what it means to be poor or near poor.

Respondents included single parents and married couples, retirees and young adults, dropouts and people with multiple college degrees.

Explanations for how they became poor or near poor included layoffs, disease or disability, abusive relationships, marriages that ended in death or divorce and age.

Some are unemployed, some work as many as four jobs. They hold, or have held, jobs such as teacher, dentist, daycare worker, non-profit officer, nurse, soldier, legal secretary and state employee.

"The face of poverty is not always what some people envision.," said one respondent. "Most people who work with me or know me casually would be shocked to know how hard I struggle, there isn't a sign around my neck."

It was an idea expressed many times.

"My family 'looks good,' we don't have the 'poor" look', but we do struggle," one respondent said.

Another said, "We are the family that doesn't really look poor. Our clothing isn't old and worn out but 98% of it is purchased at Goodwill and garage sales."

Federal guidelines put a dollar amount on poverty, as you can see in the image below.

The "near poor," which live just above the poverty level (represented in the third column above), are "more vulnerable" than most people to the "stress of economic instability caused by job loss, ill health, and fluctuations in housing, food, and transportation costs," according to the Census Bureau.

A common thread in the survey responses was the difficulty of making ends meet paycheck to paycheck.

"It feels like one step forward, two steps back, only every week," April Starr Dailey said.

Stefanie Lewis said, "I do not even know what to do anymore to survive in this world."

Another respondent said, "There is no safety net for us and no way to make one."

Tune into KOMU 8 News at noon Thursday to hear more from our viewers who are living in and near poverty.

Resources are available for those living at or near poverty, including organizations serving people who don't qualify for government assistance:

Voluntary Action Committee - it's mission is "To help low-income individuals and families bridge the gaps between crisis and stability and improve quality of life in Boone County."

Heart of Missouri United Way - It's stated goal is to mobilize "the caring power of community resources to serve people in need in mid-Missouri."

Missouri Association for Community Action - Its website provides a long list of resources and includes a map of where to get help.

 

 

 

Related Stories

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway announced her office has begun an audit of the village of Centertown.... More >>
1 hour ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 3:47:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Several Missouri lawmakers called for Gov. Eric Greitens, to resign as governor. House members, Kathie Conway,... More >>
2 hours ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 2:54:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Officials and the community are on high alert after two attempted child abductions, a little over a... More >>
2 hours ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 2:52:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - The city of Columbia cancelled residential garbage collections Tuesday due to extreme cold temperatures, but that doesn't mean... More >>
3 hours ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 2:07:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
PULASKI COUNTY - Firefighters are investigating a fire that left one person dead Monday night. The fire happened at... More >>
6 hours ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 11:09:00 AM CST January 16, 2018 in News
LINCOLN — A man has been arrested in a deadly shooting at a west-central Missouri mobile home park. ... More >>
10 hours ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 7:18:00 AM CST January 16, 2018 in News
FULTON - A circuit judge sentenced a Holts Summit man to 23 years in prison after his 17-year-old girl foster... More >>
18 hours ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 11:00:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
PULASKI COUNTY - The Pulaski County Sheriff's Department identified the victims of last Thursday's quadruple shooting that killed two and... More >>
19 hours ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 10:26:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Nineteen restaurants in downtown Columbia created special lunch and dinner menus for customers to order from for the... More >>
20 hours ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 8:59:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is delaying a planned tour to talk about his tax change... More >>
21 hours ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 7:53:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – Columbia Public Schools are closed Tuesday and one local business is hoping they will be able to capitalize... More >>
22 hours ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 7:44:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - People of all backgrounds filled the seats in the bottom of SSM Health St. Mary's Hospital to... More >>
1 day ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 4:46:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia's NAACP chapter hosted their annual 24th Martin Luther King, Jr. Day memorial program. The theme for... More >>
1 day ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 4:08:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Police say a man robbed the Best Buy on Worley Street and then held a customer and... More >>
1 day ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 1:10:16 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Dozens of drivers have slid off the road in central Missouri and the highway patrol says many of... More >>
1 day ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 1:02:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
SEDALIA (AP) — Sedalia police have identified person(s) of interest and are following leads in the investigation of Heather... More >>
1 day ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 11:41:00 AM CST January 15, 2018 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - Columbia Police said Tuesday the suspects in a robbery at Hyvee on Nifong Boulevard also stole items from... More >>
1 day ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 11:18:00 AM CST January 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The NAACP will sponsor a walk in remembrance of Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday on Monday. The... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 9:30:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds
6pm
7pm
8pm
9pm

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

5:30p
NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt
6:00p
KOMU 8 News @ 6
6:30p
Wheel of Fortune
5:30p
American Dad!
6:00p
Family Guy
6:30p
Family Guy

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Ellen's Game of Games
8:00p
This Is Us
9:01p
Chicago Med
7:00p
The Flash
8:00p
Black Lightning
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld