Goal: Move 30% of families and individuals living below the Self-Sufficiency Standard for Pennsylvania along the path toward and above that threshold by 2030.
According to the Federal Poverty Limit, a family of four earning an annual income of $24,250 or less is considered living in poverty. However, families actually experience poverty when they are unable to achieve a minimum, decent standard of living that allows them to fully participate in mainstream society. Therefore, based on the Self-Sufficiency Standard for Pennsylvania, the minimum annual income needed for financial self-sufficiency for a family of four in Butler County is $53,893. The families living between the Federal Poverty Limit definition of poverty and the Self-Sufficiency Standard definition are considered the working poor. These are the families who are living paycheck to paycheck, and often making the very difficult decisions of whether to purchase food, buy prescriptions, pay a utility bill, or take a promotion because it could affect the little assistance they are receiving, such as childcare assistance, to continue to make ends meet.
If you look only at the Federal Poverty Limit, Butler County has a poverty rate of 8.9%. However, if you use the Self-Sufficiency Standard for Pennsylvania, the rate grows to 34.8%, meaning nearly 35% of the residents of Butler County are living paycheck to paycheck. While many services and programs in our community address poverty and its effects, in the absence of focused, collective action, we are concerned the number of people living in poverty will continue to grow.
United Way of Butler County has the unique mission, history, and expertise to serve the entire community. We will create, convene, and facilitate effective community partnerships that address the complex social issue of poverty and self sufficiency. Our extensive relationships in the corporate arena and knowledge of the non-profit community place us in a unique position to assemble the right team of public, private, and government experts to address the issue of poverty.
In working on our bold goal of “30 by 30”, we are continuing effective programs such as the Employment Project, 2-1-1, Volunteer Income Tax Assistance, and the Butler Emergency Relief Initiative, as well as working with our partners to provide funding for transitional housing, healthcare for the uninsured, childcare assistance, and more. Join us in fighting the cycle of poverty and help more families in Butler County rise to self sufficiency.
Learn more about how we chose to focus on poverty by clicking here.