Jeremiah Program is a national organization with a mission to disrupt the cycle of poverty for single mothers and their children, two generations at a time. They hope to remove the stigma that only women should be poor, that only men should have better career opportunities, and only women should have to choose between themselves and their children.
They provide strategies to disrupt generational poverty among the mother and the children. They want to make leaders and successful women out of single mothers and prove that poverty does not have to stick to just one gender. Many single mothers must choose either between educating themselves and taking the time to build their careers and choosing to support their children through quick jobs which usually means leaving their education. Jeremiah Program lets these mothers invest in their personal and professional goals while simultaneously investing in the education of their children. This way she can become a change maker in her community while changing her family conditions.
The program is a nationwide project founded in 1993 by Michael J. O’Connell in partnership with the city of Minneapolis, Minnesota leaders. From there they opened the first campus in 1998 and since have expanded into other cities of Minnesota as well as Boston, Massachusetts, and Brooklyn, New York.
JP’s strategy is to provide support from the inside out. Their success lies in their support of all single moms facing poverty whatever their race and color in pursuit of a college education. They directly address the racial and systemic inequalities impacting financial stability and college entrance for single parents. They want to change the stigmas against single moms by giving their stories a voice and stage to tell a narrative. While also helping women put their leadership qualities to use.
They had the highest number of recruits in 2021 alone where they successfully served 629 families and 1583 mothers and children. In their satisfaction survey, 83% of the moms would recommend JP to a friend.
Their multifaceted method enables families to envision what is feasible when they can utilize all their identities to further their objectives. A major goal at JP is to assist moms in enrolling in and completing degree programs. Women who enroll in JP have a meeting with a family coach who helps them define academic objectives and decide on a career route. Mothers meet with their coaches at least twice a month to work through difficulties and stay on track to achieve their academic and professional objectives. Individualized coaching improves long-term economic prosperity, professional preparedness, and college retention.