Front and Center: With Guaranteed Income, “Now I Can Cover My Bills and Do Fun Things for My Son”

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Front and Center is a groundbreaking sequence of op-eds—revealed by Ms. and created in partnership with the Magnolia Mom’s Belief—which goals to place entrance and heart the voices of Black girls who’re affected most by the often-abstract insurance policies at present debated on the nationwide stage. The sequence highlights the success of Springboard to Alternatives’ Magnolia Mother’s Trust, which this yr will give $1,000 monthly for 12 months to 100 households headed by Black girls dwelling in federally sponsored housing.

What potentialities might open up for low-income households if monetary survival weren’t at all times high of thoughts? What goals would these moms and households be capable to pursue? What activism and group management would possibly come up? The sequence will reply these and different questions, by putting one mom’s story entrance and heart each different week. The primary-person accounts on this sequence can be found for reprint. Discover extra tips on the finish of this story.


I’m 27, born and raised in Jackson. I’ve a son who’s 10; he’ll be 11 in September. He likes to play soccer and is a quarterback on one of many native Little League groups. Even through the summer time he practices thrice per week. I used to be apprehensive about him getting damage at first, however my mother informed me I’ve simply received to let him be and so I made a decision I’d let him strive it. It’s solely been a number of weeks however he loves it a lot.

I hearken to my mother. She and my son are about all I’ve received. My son’s father was murdered virtually seven years in the past, so I’ve by no means actually had a giant assist community.

For work I braid hair, and earlier than that I labored on the VA Heart within the dietary division. However I left that job on the finish of final yr—it was a scary time to be there within the top of COVID however I wanted to supply for my son so I simply masked up and took the danger. They ended up transferring the VA Heart to a distinct location that’s farther away from me, and since I don’t have transportation I wasn’t capable of hold working there. 

Even after I labored there, cash was tight. I made about $1,000 a month. It’s been a wrestle—I used to be 16 after I had my son and for a very long time we have been simply bouncing round locations with no dwelling of our personal. It was just a few years in the past that I received off the waitlist for sponsored housing and we have been lastly capable of have a spot of our personal. 

So in any case these powerful occasions, it was actually unbelievable after I received the decision a number of months in the past that I might be a part of the Magnolia Mom’s Belief and begin receiving $1,000 every month—mainly the identical quantity I used to be making at my previous job. It’s helped me so, a lot. Now I can cowl my payments and do extra enjoyable issues for my son, like take him to the water park. Earlier than, I didn’t have any sources to simply be capable to exit and discover with him. There was nothing additional for that since each dime I had was going to payments.

It was actually unbelievable after I received the decision a number of months in the past that I might be a part of the Magnolia Mom’s Belief and begin receiving $1,000 every month. … Now I can cowl my payments and do extra enjoyable issues for my son.

Whereas I’ve the assist of this system, I’d like to begin taking courses to grow to be a registered nurse. My mother works within the medical area and at all times inspired me to get into it whereas I used to be rising up.

My objectives for my son for this subsequent yr of the belief are to maintain him busy with actions and to simply make sure that he’s snug. There’s rather a lot going for teenagers like him rising up in poverty, and since I’ve had the expertise of dropping somebody to violence and I do know that’s one thing that’s additionally taking place with this youthful era arising, I wish to make sure that to guard him from that and simply make sure that my son doesn’t fall into that life.

I actually consider that there needs to be a program just like the Magnolia Mom’s Belief for all of the folks dwelling in poverty who want it, particularly mothers. There may be simply a lot want out right here. I believe the factor that stops the politicians from doing it’s that they only don’t wish to spend the cash on us.

It may be arduous to seek out hope, however I simply keep in mind that I’m right here, I’m dwelling. I’m able to maintain my son, and proper now I’m capable of present him greater than he’s ever seen.


Entrance and Heart items are free to republish, beneath the next tips:

  • To make sure context isn’t misplaced, on the high of your reprint, embody a line that reads: “Front and Center is a sequence of op-eds—revealed by Ms. magazine and created in partnership with the Magnolia Mother’s Trust—highlighting the success of Springboard to Opportunities’ Magnolia Mom’s Belief program, which this yr will give $1,000 monthly for 12 months to 100 households headed by Black girls dwelling in federally sponsored housing. The sequence goals to place entrance and heart the voices of Black girls who’re affected most by the often-abstract insurance policies at present debated on the nationwide stage.” (You should use editorial discretion to change or shorten the textual content barely.)
  • You may additionally republish the images included on this story.
  • In case you share republished tales on social media, we’d admire being tagged in your posts. You will discover Ms. on Twitter @MsMagazine, on Instagram @ms_magazine and on Facebook. Springboard to Alternatives is on Twitter @SpringboardToOp, on Instagram @springboard_to and on Facebook.

Have questions on the sequence? Read more here, and direct particular inquiries to Katie Fleischer at [email protected].



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