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Practical Strategies for Working with Youth in Poverty

Children who experience poverty are at risk for adverse health and developmental outcomes. Poverty is most harmful when it is persistent or experienced in early childhood. Low-income children and youth are susceptible to a variety of obstacles at school and home that limit their chances for educational success and contribute to negative health outcomes (e.g., infant mortality, low birth weight, chronic illness, malnutrition, and environmental exposure).

Currently, 230,725 Hoosier children live in poverty. Indiana’s rate of 15.2% of children living in poverty is equal to the national rate. Indiana ranks 23rd in the nation for the percentage of children living in poverty. It also ranks highest among neighboring states, indicating the lowest rate of children living in poverty in the region: Illinois (27th), Michigan (33rd), Ohio (33rd), and Kentucky (46th).