The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic situated in North America. It consists of 50 states and its capital is Washington D.C.
Large-scale immigration has shaped the country's social and economic landscape. It has transformed the United States into a "melting pot" of different cultures and customs. Ethnically speaking, the United States of America now represents one of the most diverse nations in the world.
SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children and young people without parental care, or at risk of losing it, in the US since the 1950s.
Child poverty in the United States remains a major problem, disproportionately affecting children from communities of color and from rural areas. The child poverty rate for under-18s is 17%, which is the third highest rate out of all OECD countries. This means that almost 13 million children in the US are impoverished. Children growing up in poverty experience harmful consequences to their health, both in the short- and long-term. They are more likely to miss out on education, lose their home, and lack stability, with dire consequences to their mental health.
Access to quality education has become one of the biggest issues in the US school system. Only 60% of students from low-income households attend schools that offer a full academic curriculum. Furthermore, students from low-income households are seven times more likely to drop out of school. Without a proper education, children and young people struggle to escape the cycle of poverty.
7.4 million families are living below the poverty line in the United States. While financial insecurity is widespread, it’s more prevalent among women and people from communities of colour. 19.5% of Black people living in the US live below the poverty line compared to 8.2% of white people. Poverty is one of the risk factors for unnecessary child-family separation. The more crises families living in fragile situations face, the more their resilience is weakened.