Breaking the Cycle of Poverty Among Children

Breaking the Cycle of Poverty Among Children
Breaking the Cycle of Poverty Among Children

The low-cost, Save the Children home-visiting program that actor / advocate Jennifer Garner and journalist Nicholas Kristof explored Monday in the new PBS documentary “A Path Appears” is about America’s poorest communities.

Although research has shown that most U.S. children living in poverty fall far behind other children by the time they reach school, Save the Children says its results show that 80 percent of its young, at-risk participants score at or above the national average on pre-literacy tests.

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“We know that children with access to high-quality early education are more likely to graduate, go on to college and do well economically,” said Kathy Spangler, VP of Save the Children’s U.S. Programs. “What our results show is that even the most-at risk children in America can succeed when these efforts start early enough.”

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A Path Appears is the sequel to the PBS film Half the Sky, and both are based on books written by Pulitzer-Prize-winning, New York Times journalists Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn.

The episode on Monday, subtitled, “Breaking the Cycle of Poverty,” features West Virginia families participating in Save the Children’s early education program.

In the film, Kristof and Save the Children Artist Ambassador Jennifer Garner, a West Virginia native, tag along with Save the Children’s local program coordinator as she brings books, developmental activities and other critical support into the homes of struggling families.

The program, which offers home visits from a mother’s pregnancy through age 3, also forges early connections between families and their child’s future school.

In the picture above: Save the Children Artist Ambassador Jennifer Garner joins a home visit with Johnny, 3, in Mason County, West Virginia in the “Breaking the Cycle of Poverty” episode of the new PBS documentary series, A Path Appears. Credit: Save the Children, Audrey Hall / Show of Force.

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Rakesh Raman