Welfare Without Dignity Doesn’t Work

Welfare Without Dignity Doesn’t Work

Welfare Without Dignity Doesn’t Work 

 

 

By Corey Burres

 

 

I drove through my neighborhood and saw dozens of tents lining the wooded area near my home. I realized there were families and single mothers living in these tents. My heart broke. How did we get here? When did we start to accept this for those in our communities?

I know from our work at Georgia Center for Opportunity (GCO) there are local and governmental services available. I know there are many community groups and philanthropic organizations working to address the basic needs of shelter, food, and health. But I question if these systems address the issue of dignity.

Dignity is a word we throw around a lot at GCO. It’s a core value for our team, but it is also a core component of how we choose to view others. It is a driver, yes, but more importantly, it is a goal. We can address needs and make some headway, but until we restore dignity to individuals we will continue to fight an endless battle. Government safety-net programs are not designed to restore dignity. That is a problem.

Without finding self-worth and dignity in what we do, we continue to seek “just enough.” If we truly want those around us to thrive, we must create systems that seek to do more than simply appease a need. We must create systems that see the value of peoples’ humanity and desire for them to move into a vibrant and thriving future.

The fact of the matter is that systems like Medicaid, food stamps, and other programs are not designed to move people into a better life. Instead, they are a stop-gap that simply meets an immediate or temporary need.

If we truly want those around us to thrive, we must create systems that seek to do more than simply appease a need. We must create systems that see the value of peoples’ humanity and desire for them to move into a vibrant and thriving future.

In the case of temporary unemployment or hard times, this is sufficient and works as intended. It’s why many people tout the effectiveness of these programs. They do work—for some.

However, in the case of intergenerational or long-term poverty, the result is marginalized groups systemically stuck—trapped in dependency and without hope.

And that is what I see when I pass these tent cities. These are our neighbors who have surrendered to a way of life, one that we desperately hope our own loved ones will never experience. The tragedy is that our political leaders have done just enough to appease them.

True compassion says we should hope for them to move off government assistance programs and feel the sense of dignity and belonging we want for everyone.

Over the next month, we are going to highlight changes to assistance programs that will remove the traps in our safety-net systems. We will highlight local support networks that view the individual through the lens of the dignity that they deserve. And we will bring together the business and community leaders leading the charge at Breakthrough.

Will you join us?

 

Georgia groups push Kemp for virtual-learning microgrants | WALKER COUNTY MESSENGER

Georgia groups push Kemp for virtual-learning microgrants | WALKER COUNTY MESSENGER

Georgia groups push Kemp for virtual-learning microgrants | WALKER COUNTY MESSENGER

ATLANTA – Several groups are pressing Gov. Brian Kemp to start divvying out small federal grant funds aimed at helping families pay for school supplies, child care and other expenses while their children are taking online classes amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

In a letter sent Tuesday, Sept. 15, groups including the American Federation for Children, the Down Syndrome Association of Atlanta and GeorgiaCAN urged Kemp to reserve more than $20 million in federal COVID-19 funds for microgrants, which cover small one-time expenses.

 

Along with several educational and disability-advocacy groups, the letter was also signed by a handful of conservative-leaning organizations including the Americans for Prosperity’s Georgia chapter and the Faith and Freedom Coalition of Georgia.

The Georgia Public Policy Foundation and the Georgia Center for Opportunity also signed the letter.

Read the full article here

 

Georgia groups push Kemp for virtual-learning microgrants | WALKER COUNTY MESSENGER

Less than half of Georgians approve of how Trump, Kemp have responded to COVID-19 | 11 Alive News

Less than half of Georgians approve of how Trump, Kemp have responded to COVID-19 | 11 Alive News

A new, exclusive 11Alive News/SurveyUSA Poll finds that if a coronavirus vaccine is developed, a full one-third of Georgians are not likely to take it.

While there is a consensus across the state that the nation has done a poor job at controlling the spread of the virus, many Georgia residents are torn on what needs to be done in order to correct the problems that exists…

 

The partisan divide is making it more difficult for officials and scientists to curb the pandemic, said GOP former state Rep. Buzz Brockway.  “I think that is hampering us,” said Brockway, who is now with the Georgia Center for Opportunity. “A crisis should be something that brings us all together. But it’s not. It’s forcing us into some of our camps.”

 

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Georgia groups push Kemp for virtual-learning microgrants | WALKER COUNTY MESSENGER

Nonprofits face funding shortages, increase demands amid COVID-19 | The Center Square

Nonprofits face funding shortages, increase demands amid COVID-19 | The Center Square

 Nonprofit organizations in Georgia are facing higher demands for services but decreases in revenue amid the COVID-19 pandemic, a recent survey found.

According to a June survey by the Georgia Center for Nonprofits (GCN), 90 percent of nonprofit organizations that responded have seen a drop in revenue since the onset of the COVID-19 outbreak…

Corey Burres, a spokesman for the Georgia Center for Opportunity (GCO), an organization aimed at increasing opportunities for Georgians, said many of its partner nonprofits had been in discussions about layoffs and reconstruction.

“The demand for services is going through the roof, while financial support is not keeping pace,” he said. “While most organizations have been able to continue to give to the needs around them, we had one organization share that they have yet to not meet the needs.”

“Older volunteers have been unable or (understandably) unwilling to help out with the risks involved in going out in public,” Burres said.

 

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Georgia groups push Kemp for virtual-learning microgrants | WALKER COUNTY MESSENGER

Leaders React to Passing of Georgia Congressman John Lewis | All On Georgia

Leaders React to Passing of Georgia Congressman John Lewis | All On Georgia

Civil rights icon and Georgia Congressman John Lewis passed away Friday at the age of 80. He was the last of the Big Six civil rights activists led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., and so congressional congressional colleagues, civil rights leaders, and individuals alike have all been quick to remember his legacy…

Former GA State Representative Buzz Brockway:

“I am sad that John Lewis passed away. He had courage to stand for what he believed in, even when is put his life in jeopardy. It’s easy to say we have that kind of courage, but he proved it. I’m glad I got the chance to shake his hand. Prayers for his family and friends.”

 

 

Read the full article here