The Annie E. Casey Foundation has released their 2012 KIDS COUNT Data Book.  It contains reports of their research of the educational, social, econonomic, and physical well-being of children in the United States.  They have ranked Arizona 46th (out of 50 states) in child well-being.  For a quick glance at how all the states fared, check this out:
On the Kids Count website, you’ll find specific information for each state.  As you poke around, you will find that this is just a sampling of the topics they have researched :
– Percentage of children living in poverty (this number has been on the rise!)
– High school students who don’t graduate on time
– Number of children in single-parent families
– Teen birth rate
– 4th grade reading levels
– Grandparents responsible for their grandchildren (would you believe that Arizona is at 44%?!)
– Percentage of children who receive food stamps
I believe data such as this is helpful for getting a “big picture” glance at the culture today, especially as it relates to children and teens.  Then, begin asking yourself or your church or your friends, “What can we do to make a difference in that area?”  How can the body of Christ put feet to their faith and reach out to a teen mom, a grandparent, a struggling student, a poor family? 

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