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Child Poverty in the UK: Understanding Its Effects and How to Help


Child poverty is often something of an invisible menace. While it's common knowledge that it exists, it's not always simple to identify a child living in poverty. Yet, the statistics say that around 3.9 million children in the UK live in poverty, which is around a third of all children in the UK.


It's often easy to underestimate the effects of poverty on children. Yet, those effects are very real and range from health outcomes to academic achievement and even long-term employment prospects. Keep reading to learn more.


Health Effects

One of the more common effects of childhood poverty is poor health. Children born into or who grow up in poverty often suffer from chronic illnesses, such as respiratory problems.

They're more likely to contract meningitis. Children born into poverty often arrive with lower birth weights.


At least one possible explanation for some of the health consequences is that children in poverty suffer from some level of chronic malnutrition. Unhealthy foods routinely cost less than healthy foods.


Developmental Effects

Health effects are not the only consequence of a childhood marked by poverty. Children of poverty also prove more susceptible to developmental problems. Mental health problems such as anxiety and depression are more common among children that grow up in poverty.


A poverty-stricken childhood may also affect brain development in negative ways.


Educational Effects

There is a fairly straightforward correlation between poverty and reduced academic performance. Poor children often enter the educational system less prepared for the demands.

They often underachieve relative to children from more affluent homes. While some of this likely stems from a lack of resources, the differences in brain development mentioned above may also play a role.


Social Outcomes

While it's difficult to prove cause and effect, there is also a strong correlation between growing up in poverty and poor social outcomes. Children of poverty typically enjoy fewer advantages and fewer opportunities to excel.


They're more likely to end up living in poor neighborhoods as adults. That compounds their disadvantages. They're also less likely to land high-paying jobs that would let them escape a poverty cycle.


How Can You Help with Child Poverty?

Knowing how to help with childhood poverty isn't always obvious. One option is to shop at specific websites that will donate to charities that provide things like essential clothing for children.


Child Poverty in the UK

With millions of children living in poverty, the problem of child poverty remains a present challenge in the UK. It's also a problem with serious effects. Children growing up in poverty often face serious and chronic health problems. Developmental effects can leave children susceptible to mental health problems and impact academic performance. Poverty also has social effects, such as limiting opportunities that might let children eventually move out of poverty as adults.


Clothing Collective helps provide clothing to those in need. For more information about how you can help, contact Clothing Collective today or subscribe to our newsletter.

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