KidCheck Secure Children's Check-In Shares A Guest Post from Dale Hudson

This guest post is from Dale Hudson. Dale is a prolific thought-leader, who has helped build some of the largest and fastest growing modern ministries in the United States. He’s an author, teacher, and national speaker, who understands the value and responsibility of leading children. He’s served in children’s ministry 28 years and has recently co-authored the book If Disney Ran Your Children’s Ministry.

In the post, Dale shares some of the latest findings from the Forum on Child and Family Statistics, with the goal of helping those working with children stay abreast on what’s happening in their lives and families.

Click here to read more from Dale on his blog Relevant Children’s Ministry, purchase his latest book, and see the locations of his Keynote appearances.


Children are the greatest mission field.  Here’s the latest findings about the kids we are called to reach in America.

  • There are 73.6 million children (ages 0 to 17).
    • 24 million (ages 0 to 5)
    • 24.7 million (ages 6 to 11)
    • 25 million (ages 12 to 17)
  • Children are 22.8% of the overall population.
  • 65% live with two married parents.  This is down from 77% in 1980.
  • 40.3% are born to an unmarried mother.
  • 23% live with only their mother.
  • 4% live only with their father.
  • 8% live with two unmarried parents who are cohabiting.
  • 4% live with their grandparents or someone other than their parents.
  • 49% (ages 0 to 4) live with an employed mother, whose primary childcare arrangement is with a relative.
  • 61% (ages 3 to 6 – who are not in kindergarten) attend a center-based childcare arrangement.
  • 25% live with at least one foreign born parent.
  • 83% (ages 3 to 5) are read to at least 3 times a week.
  • 6% (ages 4 to 17) are reported by a parent to have serious difficulties with emotions, concentration, behavior, or getting along with other people.
  • 20% (ages 6 to 17) are obese.
  • 9 out of every 1,000 children are victims of maltreatment (which includes physical, sexual, and psychological abuse, as well as neglect – including medical neglect):
    • 75% are neglected
    • 17% physically abused
    • 8% sexually abused
    • 6% psychologically abused
  • 20% live in poverty.  28% live in families with medium income.  14% live in families high income.
  • 13.1 million children (18% of all children) live in households considered food insecure.
  • 6% of parents reported that their child (ages 4 to 17) displays serious difficulties with emotions,
    concentration, behavior, or getting along with other people.
  • 22% of 3rd-5th graders are victims of bullying.
  • 6% of 3rd-graders say they have bullied someone else.  5% have teased, made fun of called someone else a name.  3% have told lies or untrue stories about someone else.  2% have pushed, shoved, slapped hit or kicked other students.  2% have excluded other students from play.

What a privilege we have to been given to minister to children.  As you can see, the need is great.

Your ministry matters.  You matter.  The children of America need you.  May God anoint and equip you to reach at least one of them this week.