Help and resources for single mothers in Utah
Aug 3, 2023, 6:00 PM | Updated: 6:20 pm
SALT LAKE CITY — Researchers at Utah State University are working on better understanding the unique needs of single mothers in Utah.
A recent report shows roughly 23% of U.S. children live with one parent, compared to 7% globally.
Associate Director of the Utah Women and Leadership Project Emily Darowski told KSL NewsRadio that as of 2021, there are almost 49,000 single mothers living with children in The Beehive State.
Darowski said some of a single mother’s needs surround being at high risk of living in poverty.
“In Utah, we can see a couple of contributing factors for that, such as the wage gap. Utah has a larger wage gap between men and women compared to the nation,” she said. “There’s also the cost and access of childcare, and also, the rising cost of living and housing in our state.”
Despite this, single mothers are not helpless. According to Darowski, there are resources that can help. She highlighted Utah 211, which has a resource list for single parents. Along with this Darowski mentioned the Live Your Dream Foundation, which gives scholarships to single mothers looking to finish their education.
“In our report, at the end, we have a ‘What can Utahns Do’ section,” Darowski said. “We link to several of these resources … including other government programs, such as WIC, for example, and Head Start and other programs that can be accessed.”
Help doesn’t stop at the resources. Darowski said there are several things everyone can do to help single mothers.
“I think we need to look at childcare reform,” she said. “We need to lend support to single mothers. There’s a heavy burden that they carry by themselves … If you’re a single parent, it’s really hard to juggle work, to juggle taking your kids to school and to recreation … We need to rally around these single mothers and help them.”