The Facts

Poverty Statistics in the United States

  • According to Social Solutions, in 2016, there are 564,708 homeless Americans.

  • 83,170 individuals, or 15% of the homeless population are considered “chronically homeless”.

  • 1.4 million veterans are at risk of homelessness.

  • The median household income in Morgan County is $54,986. However, in Martinsville, where WellSpring is located, the median income is only $36,379- the second lowest city in the county.
  • The unemployment rate in Morgan County is 5.5%. The statewide unemployment rent is 4.6%
  • 11.9% of Morgan county residents live in poverty. The percentage of Morgan County children living in poverty is even higher: 19.3%.
  • Martinsville has the highest number of SNAP recipients in Morgan County.

In 2015:

  • In FY 2015-16 WellSpring provided 18,953 nights of shelter to homeless families. This is up from 17,366 nights in FY 2014-2015
  • In 2015, WellSpring Center provided 17,366 nights of shelter.
  • In Morgan County, the top unmet need for 2-1-1 callers was housing.
  • 117 kids (45%) received Free and Reduced Lunch.

In 2014:

  • 46.7 million people (14.8 percent) were in poverty.
  • 15.5 million (21.1 percent) children under the age of 18 were in poverty.
  • 4.6 million (10 percent) seniors 65 and older were in poverty.
  • 48.1 million Americans lived in food insecure households, including 32.8 million adults and 15.3 million children.
  • 14 percent of households (17.4 million households) were food insecure.
  • The number of homeless students in Indiana schools has more than doubled since before the Great Recession, according to the Indianapolis Star, giving the Hoosier State the dubious distinction of having one of the largest jumps in student homelessness of any state over that period of time. Overall, student homelessness is up 121 percent in Indiana.
  • A total of 16,223 Indiana students were homeless in the 2012-13 academic year, compared to about 7,300 homeless students in 2006-07. The state’s suburban and rural areas have seen the largest jump in student homelessness in percentage terms. The number of students without a place to sleep nearly tripled in Morgan County, and increased by almost 900 percent in Madison County. But the homeless student population is concentrated in Marion County, which includes Indianapolis. The county’s homeless student population grew by 69 percent to 5,233 over the period.
  • Last fall, the Department of Education reported that there were over 1.1 million homeless primary, secondary, and preschool students nationwide in 2011-12, which one children’s advocacy group said was a 72 percent increase from the start of the economic downturn.
  • But the only state that reported a higher percentage increase in student homelessness in that October report than what Indiana has experienced was North Dakota, where student homelessness rose 212 percent. The next highest percentage increases were in Maine (58 percent), North Carolina (53 percent), and Michigan (42 percent).
  • The total number of homeless children is even larger than the tally of homeless students, with 6 million children homeless in 2010 according to the National Center on Family Homelessness.
  • That most dire form of privation doesn’t tell the whole story of child poverty in America, of course. More than 16 million children live in poverty around the country, and America has one of the highest child poverty rates of any developed nation. Academic research suggests that growing up in poverty alters brain function and undermines a child’s academic success and long-term mental and physical health.