person displaying empty pocketThe Poverty At Issue website places financial poverty in the context of the whole experience of families who struggle with inadequate resources. Providing sound information and resources to individuals and agencies who deal with poverty is our goal.

Poverty is different for each person who experiences it. Every family has a unique mix of strengths, life stage issues, location, past experiences, set of resources, access to services, personal or workplace challenges, and dreams.

It is difficult to fully understand the complexities and nuances of an individual family, but to really support families who live in poverty, we must try. One-size-fits-all solutions do not exist. Poverty is a dynamic process. Rules, regulations, and policies interact with each other; and interpretations and implementation differ from county to county or state to state.

Working with families living in poverty is at the same time demanding and fulfilling. People in this work often say they learn more from the families they serve than the families learn from them. That has been our experience – we are in awe of the resourcefulness and perseverance of those who struggle.

The information here attempts to help people understand the issues and identify resources to help, but it is just the tip of the iceberg - a modest attempt to shed light on the situation and provide support. Policies and statistics change day-to-day. We do our best to stay on top of the information, and your help or feedback is always welcome. Please contact me if you notice something that is out of date or just doesn’t seem quite right. We’ll fix it!

Brenda Procter
State Specialist & Instructor
Personal Financial Planning Extension

To enhance your understanding of poverty in Missouri, we recommend you take the Poverty at Issue quiz.