Front and Center: ‘I’m Providing Childcare for Other People’s Kids, but I Don’t Have the Childcare I Need’

Front and Center is a groundbreaking Ms. series that offers first-person accounts of Black mothers living in Jackson, Miss., receiving a guaranteed income. First launched in 2018, the Magnolia Mother’s Trust (MMT) is about to enter its fifth cohort, bringing the number of moms served to more than 400 and making it the longest-running guaranteed income program in the country. Across the country, guaranteed income pilots like MMT are finding that recipients are overwhelmingly using their payments for basic needs like groceries, housing and transportation.

“I want to get back to school so I can level up in early childhood education. The challenge is being a single mom and needing to have someone there for my child when I’m not. … I’m providing childcare for other people’s kids, and at the same time, I don’t have the childcare I need to be able to do the stuff that I want to do.”