Hanging By a Thread
Outside appearances paint Orange County as a vibrant community filled with happy, active families and a thriving economy. But what you don’t see on the surface tells the tale for thousands of Orange County residents who are unemployed or underemployed, homeless or insecure in their housing, and hungry or hard pressed to find adequate food for themselves or their children.
While household incomes for many Orange County residents are well above the six-figure mark, more than 220,000 Orange County children—nearly half of enrolled K–12 students—live in families making the equivalent of $40,000 per year for a family of four.
Significant income disparity coupled with high cost of living challenges many families and individuals to meet even the most basic needs. Oftentimes, multiple families must share crowded living spaces. Seventy percent of Orange County’s homeless are families with children. And one in five Orange County children lives without a reliable source of healthy food.