Black single mothers can do it alone, but why should they do it when resources are everywhere?
“Our problems often take a back seat, and COVID has made it very clear that … mothers, colored and black mothers keep their communities in such moments, but we need to prioritize their needs so that our communities can thrive,” Daniel said. Said Atkinson, national executive director and founder of the local nonprofit Mothering Justice.
Mothering Justice empowers colored mothers to influence politics on behalf of themselves and their families.
Black mothers in need, especially those on the lower rungs of the economic ladder, find it difficult to find them as long as they are busy raising children, a single breadwinner and emotional and foundational support 24/7 immediate relief is not seen.
The saying, “You need a village to raise a child” is especially true for many single mothers who have no choice but to rely on family and friends to care for their children and provide them with great support when baby care is too expensive and many times there can be no question.
In 2020, according to national statistics, there were about 4.25 million black families with single mothers in the United States. This is an increase over 1990, when approximately 3.4 million black families were raised by single mothers.
In Detroit, according to Smartest Dollar, 72 percent of single mothers raise children alone.
Even in addition to babysitting needs, single mothers seeking additional resources and help may not always know how to navigate, but there is help with several organizations seeking to help single mothers, especially black women, that allow them to thrive.
Atkinson said Mothering Justice is a leadership advocacy and development organization that focuses primarily on changing policies at the expense of available dollars to teach the public to return what should be in them, through legislative changes.
“We want everyone to know about the opportunities they give the federal government and the state of Michigan to make it easier for them,” Atkinson said of making things like childcare more accessible. “We work with many organizations and … we think it’s important to communicate with moms one-on-one.”
Atkinson added that black single mothers are often “underrepresented.”
“I was also raised by a single mother,” Atkinson said. “Every sacrifice my mother has made has made me who I am today.”
She added that the country is “catching the burden” that single mothers have been facing for years.
«[Single mothers] these are the people who hold our community so tight and do it so well that the only policy that makes sense is those who … literally care about the community, ”Atkinson said, adding that paid leave should be a requirement for companies and childcare should be less expensive. “Caring for children doesn’t have to cost as much as college.”
For more information, visit https://www.motheringjustice.org/.
Discovering for yourself
Dr. Joan Frederick, a licensed mental health counselor from Washington, D.C., told the Michigan Chronicle that some single mothers are trying to overcome the emotional upheavals they may experience because of the death of a relationship. She said it comes down to acknowledging that a romantic breakup is a loss, and grieving about that loss is okay.
“You will go through stages of grief. You may cry, be sad and upset [depressed]you can bargain with yourself or an ex-partner, you can get angry, you can go through rejection [this can’t be real], eventually you will accept the changes and rebuild, ”said Frederick, adding that single mothers may also have to explain their relationship changes to their children. “Explain to each child based on his or her age, but don’t overburden children too much. If a romantic breakup seems very emotionally difficult, seek the help of professionals to discuss relationships, loss, and rebuilding / rebuilding yourself as a single woman. ”
Jenny Hutchinson, director of the Detroit-based organization Sistahs Reachin ‘Out (SRO), told the Michigan Chronicle that her organization promotes proven ways out of poverty by helping Detroit women out of financial risk.
One of their programs. Pathways is a 13-week cohort of coaching and mentoring that prepares the SRO’s target group for access to higher education or entrepreneurship, the website said. In addition to training and mentoring, Pathways also provides a variety of comprehensive services that “reduce barriers to success in the education or entrepreneurship of low-income single parents”.
Hutchinson said that through entrepreneurship and higher education, the program helps women use “proven ways” to avoid low-wage living and poverty.
“What we hope to do with our programs is to capture this population through aid,” she said of liaising with other already established local programs to help even more women. “We can open the door for a young mother in our program to attend college.”
Hutchinson added that the program helps students who hope to overcome barriers to finding reliable transportation while supporting families.
“Lowering barriers is critical to ensuring that the people we seek to serve are by nature successful in these two proven paths,” Hutchinson said.
For more information, visit https://srodet.org/.
Visit Michigan Department of Health and Human Services website and click “Contact Us” at the top of the home page, then “Contact Your Local Office”, this will take you to a map and a list of local offices depending on where you live: MDHHS – County Offices (michigan.gov)
More resources can be found at:
- The metropolitan agency of Detroit and Wayne with assistance in food and housing by calling 313-388-9799 or visit their website at https://www.waynemetro.org
- The resources of the Society of St. Vincent DePolo in the Archdiocese of Detroit can help with financial aid, clothing and food on http://svdpdet.org/need-help/
- Cass Community Social Services can help with other primary care services by calling (313) 833-1168.