Millions of American families are Asset Limited, Income Constrained, and Employed. In the past, this socioeconomic status was called “the working poor.” Today, there is new terminology used to identify this part of the population, and that term is A.L.I.C.E. Recently, I had the opportunity to shine the light on A.L.I.C.E. at United Way’s Annual Board Chairman’s Luncheon. As I stood there sharing part of my journey as A.L.I.C.E., my heart raced and palms sweaty, but I knew I was the representative for a population of people who need a voice in our East Texas community and beyond. For those brief moments, I was honored to be the face of A.L.I.C.E. I was able to bring the audience into the lives of millions of families. I am A.L.I.C.E. We work, are varied in educational levels, and come from all ethnicities, races, gender, and backgrounds.
I am a divorced, single mother of three, work full-time, hold a Bachelor’s of Arts and one term away from obtaining my Master’s in Humanities, yet; I am still A.L.I.C.E.
A.L.I.C.E. works hard to meet the needs of the family and does the best she can with what she has, all while trying to do better. A.L.I.C.E. makes hard decisions from paycheck to paycheck. Will she have to buy less food to have enough money to pay the utility bill? Will she be short on rent this month because her child was sick a few days, and she had to take off work? Will she be able to just meet the basic needs of food, shelter, and clothing? What will happen if her son wants a Field Day shirt, but she just can’t fit it into the budget? The day to day operations in the life of A.L.I.C.E. can be brutal and stressful. Here are 4 FREE Ways You Can Help A.L.I.C.E.
- Affirm Her: Tell A.L.I.C.E. she’s doing a great job. She may feel down because she can’t always supply needs beyond the most basic ones for the family.
- Time: Offer her a few hours to herself. She just needs a break sometimes, and may never ask for fear of judgement. She is afraid to admit she needs to take off her superwoman cape, even if only for a few hours.
- Be A Judgement Free Zone: A.L.I.C.E. comes from all walks of life. Don’t judge her not knowing her story.
- See Her: Acknowledge that A.L.I.C.E. exists. Those who are A.L.I.C.E. are often overlooked and invisible because are employed, but remember A.L.I.C.E. is Income Constrained. Having income doesn’t automatically equate to all needs met. In other words, her money is funny, and her change is strange from paycheck to paycheck.
To learn more about A.L.I.C.E. CLICK HERE.
Post by Angel Davis: