Thursday, May 10, 2012

Happy Mother's Day to California moms and moms everywhere!

Today’s post comes from Anne Ryan, a staff person at CompassPoint and co-convener of Nonprofits Talking Taxes.

Your mom or mother figure is the one who fed and bathed you, listened, gave advice, and did your laundry. The person who cheered you on at games, plays and recitals. She reminded you to bring a jacket and wear sunscreen. She showed your school, graduation and/or wedding picture to everyone she met. She made countless and maybe unknown sacrifices to give you the support you needed so you could pursue your dreams.

In a recent discussion with my own mother, I learned that while in college she and my dad received food stamps for a time. She spoke about how exciting it was that for the first time in a long time they could enjoy such luxuries as a can of black olives. I was struck by the fact that tax-funded programs had made it a little bit easier for my mom to be a mom, because they helped her and my dad get through college, find secure jobs, and provide me with a comfortable childhood and a quality education.

Countless moms in California right now rely on public programs to put food on their tables and to access health care, child care, income assistance and job search assistance to support their families. Over the past several years, mothers, especially single mothers, have been hit hard by the recession. State budget cuts to programs put in place to help during difficult times like these have made their situation much harder. You can read more about this in the California Budget Project's report (pdf).

So this Mother's Day, as your celebrating the wonder that is your mother, take a moment to talk with someone you know about how the State of California can appreciate all California mothers. Ask your mother what support (publicly funded or otherwise) was helpful to her as she raised her family. Talk to someone you know about how you think we can help mothers in the state of California. Share with us on Twitter or Facebook what your nonprofit does to support mothers.

Mothers help us grow, learn, laugh, mourn and so many other things. Let's do what we can to help them as well. Let's talk to each about how we can protect the programs that help mothers when they're down.

And to all the mothers who are reading this: Happy Mother's Day!

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