The COVID pandemic has widened the gap between children who have the resources to learn at home and those who don’t.

As the national leader in America’s rural communities, we're helping children living in poverty prepare for and succeed in school, so they can succeed in life. Your support helps this critical work. 

Help Save Children in the United States

Millions of poor and marginalized children in America do not get a fair chance to succeed in life because of where they’re growing up. In nearly every state, there are stark disparities among the experiences and opportunities for children – with pockets of promise and great disadvantage.

Data from Save the Children’s 2020 U.S. Complement to the Global Childhood Report shows that 1 in every 7 children in America experiences shockingly high rates of hunger, school dropouts, teenage pregnancy and/or child death.

While the coronavirus pandemic has not caused any of the issues, it’s very likely to make them worse. An unprecedented number of school closures have caused children across the nation to miss out on nutritious meals and learning that could have a devastating impact on their growth.

The Challenges for Children in the United States

The U.S. trails nearly all other high-income countries in helping children reach their full potential. Ranking from the U.S. Complement to the Global Childhood Report 2020 show which states are succeeding, and which ones are failing to provide conditions that nurture and protect children. 

Top 10 States

1. New Jersey
2. Massachusetts
3. New Hampshire
4. Connecticut
5. Iowa
6. Vermont
7. Minnesota
8. Rhode Island
9. Wisconsin
10. Maryland

Bottom 10 States

41. Alabama
42. Alaska
43. Georgia
44. Nevada
45. South Carolina
46. Arkansas
47. Oklahoma
48. New Mexico
49. Mississippi
50. Lousiana

  • New Jersey has the most top-ranked counties, but also a large equity gap
  • Mississippi and Louisiana have the most low-ranked counties
  • Nationally, more than 1 in 7 children struggle with hunger
  • 1 in 7 high school students don’t graduate
  • 15% of people live in poverty

Closing the Childhood Equity Gap for Kids in America

In most states across America, there are stark differences between communities that provide children the childhoods they deserve, and those where childhoods end too soon. These disparities, likely made worse by COVID-19, threaten the future of our next generation.

Childhood should be a time when our nation’s youngest citizens develop into the adults who will care for and lead our country, our world, and our shared future. Yet for millions of children in the United States, childhood is ending too soon.

  • Over 9 million children live in the lowest-ranked counties
  • Children in the most disadvantaged counties die at rates up to 5 times those of their peers in the same state
  • They are 3 times as likely to lack healthy food and consistent meals
  • Students are 14 times as likely to drop out of high school
  • Girls are 26 times more likely to get pregnant

Our Results for Children in America

Thanks to giving people like you, our work for children in the United States is making a difference. Last year, we changed the lives of over 328,000 children.
  • 42,000 children lifted from poverty
  • 9,000 children healthy and nourished
  • 260,000 children education and empowered
  • 89,000 children protected from harm
  • 241,000 children aided in crisis

Our Work for Children in America

Since 1932, Save the Children has been on the ground providing support to the most isolated and underserved children in rural America. From our earliest days in Appalachia – helping children and families hardest-hit by the Great Depression – to today, our U.S. team goes where others cannot. 

Thanks to the generosity of donors like you, we are the leading organization in rural America’s poorest communities equipping parents and caregivers with the skills they need to be their child’s first and best teacher. Plus, our teams are there before, during and after U.S. emergencies. We’ve been on the front lines meeting children’s most critical needs in every major U.S. disaster since Hurricane Katrina.

Together with Save the Children Action Network, Save the Children is a leading advocate for children, ensuring their voices are heard and their best interests are prioritized. We fill critical gaps in services and deliver scalable solutions to the challenges children face.  

Our sponsorship program gives a child growing up in need in America the opportunity for a brighter future. Sponsorship directly benefits a sponsored child’s community, ensuring access to a quality education and the opportunity to grow in a nurturing environment. 

Coronavirus & Kids: Resources from Save the Children

You’re not alone. As the world’s leading expert on childhood, we’re providing parents, schools and communities with tools and tips you can trust about coronavirus (COVID-19) and kids. Together, we’re doing whatever it takes to protect our children.


How You Can Help Children in America

Support Save the Children’s mission. Donate to help children living in poverty in the U.S. and around the world survive and thrive.

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Sources: *Unless otherwise noted, facts and statistics have been sourced from Save the Children’s monitoring and evaluation experts and from the 2020 U.S. Complement to the Global Childhood Report


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