When many of us think about poverty, we think about that starving child from overseas we see in those commercials. We think about developing countries and war-torn nations. Most of us fail to think about people living right here in the United States. Over 10% of our population is suffering from poverty at any given moment. That is over 319 million citizens. What does this mean exactly? Over a tenth of the American population does not even have enough money for basics needs such as food and shelter. These people are struggling to get by and are often reliant off of government aid programs. As if having to struggle to make ends meet wasn’t difficult enough, this population is met with a lot of stigma. Many people fail to understand how individuals have gotten themselves into such situations. They may even try to argue that they are trying to take advantage of the system or are just lazy. Not only are these claims offensive, but they are very far off. In fact, there are a number of people below the poverty line who do work. Additionally, a majority of impoverished Americans are under the age of 18 or elderly. A lot of people suffering from poverty really can’t do anything about their situation. It is important that the government does their part to help these people in need. The government has a responsibility to protect and care for the people. The United States is certainly in the condition where it can help take care of some of the less fortunate people. In order to understand how to end poverty, you really have to try to learn where it begins. There are five dimensional measures that would make someone more likely to end up below the poverty line between the ages of 25-61. These risk factors would be; growing up with low household income, having limited access to education, lacking health insurance, coming from a low-income area, and having unemployment in your household. There is a strong connection with being born into a disadvantaged household and remaining disadvantaged. These results make one think very clear. Addressing poverty is going to require some early intervention. 70% of those who are born poor, will stay poor for the rest of their lives. Much like someone can be born into wealth, many people are born into poverty and unable to escape. The poverty trap is a phenomenon where people are continuously stuck in a vicious cycle of financial struggles. There are a number of reasons that may explain why this happens. A child that is brought up in poverty is more likely to experience abuse that can have a negative impact on their physical and mental health. Without adequate health care, they may be more prone to injuries or even brain damage. The negative impact on their mental health may discourage them from making strong social attachments or encourage them to act out. This can have a devastating effect on both their professional and academic performance. These individuals do not have the money for some lifechanging treatments. They don’t have the kind of resources to enroll in higher education or land a job. It is not surprising that many of them struggle to find adequate employment or simply don’t know any other way of life. Childhood poverty can lead to diminished life prospects. Now what if you were able to help the child before their life spiraled out of control? This is where early intervention programs like to target people and break the cycle. There are a number of programs that are already put in place to try to address poverty. These programs do anywhere from offering financial incentive for academic performance all the way to just providing affordable childcare services. They give a child the opportunity to compensate for where they are lacking. They can get that extra stimulation their parents could not provide. They could get proper nutrition or social experiences that their poverty had previously prevented.