COVID 19 and the Effect on Children

When people talk about the effects of COVID-19, the topic is usually regarding how many have died during the pandemic.
African American BabyUnfortunately, there is another group that is suffering greatly and is often forgotten. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, in this country, for about every four deaths, one child loses a caregiver. In addition, the study found that “Children of racial and ethnic minorities accounted for 65% of those who lost a primary caregiver due to the pandemic.” This means that 1 of every 310 black children experience the death of a caregiver or are orphaned.

The effects of losing a caregiver can be devastating to a child. The loss of a parent or caregiver is known to be an Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE). Children who experience this are more likely to have mental health problems, lower self-esteem, sexual risk behaviors, shorter schooling, and a higher risk of sexual abuse, suicide, violence, and exploitation. In addition, some children are orphaned, while other children may lose a parent or grandparent to COVID. Then their other parent is unable to cope with the loss emotionally or financially and cannot continue parenting.

It is very important that the needs of these children are met. Support for these children and their families can come in many different forms. From assistance for remaining parent or caregiver to adoption, the care these children receive can make all the difference. The researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Boston Children’s Hospital and multiple universities have found ‘Children losing caregivers to COVID-19 need care and safe, stable, and nurturing families with economic support, quality childcare and evidence-based parenting support programs.’

The COVID-19 pandemic has been devastating to many families. According to PNAS (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America), on average, every COVID-19 death affects nine surviving family members. This may be a sibling, spouse, child, parent, or grandparent. According to the CDC, over 700,000 have died from COVID-19 in the US. That means, on average, over 6,300,000 people have been affected by a COVID-19 death in the US. Many of those affected are children, and we must look out for these children to support them in any way possible.

Author Mardie Caldwell

Written by Mardie Caldwell, C.O.A.P.

Founder of Lifetime Adoption, adoptive mom, adoption expert, and Certified Open Adoption Practitioner (C.O.A.P).

Since 1986, adoption expert Mardie Caldwell has been dedicated to bringing couples and birth parents together in order to fulfill their dreams.

“Many years ago, I was also searching for a child to adopt. We didn’t know where or how to get started. Through research, determination, and a prayer, our dream of a family became reality. I started with a plan, a notebook, assistance from a caring adoption consultant and a lot of hard work; this was my family I was building. We had a few heartaches along the way, but the pain of not having children was worse!

Within weeks we had three different birth mothers choose us. We were overwhelmed and delighted. Many unsettling events would take place before our adoption would be finalized, many months later. Little did I know that God was training and aligning me for the adoption work I now do today. It is my goal to share with our families the methods and plans which succeed and do not succeed. I believe adoption should be affordable and can be a wonderful “pregnancy” for the adoptive couple.

I have also been on both sides of infertility with the loss of seven pregnancies and then conceiving by new technology, giving birth to a healthy daughter. I have experienced first-hand the emotional pain of infertility and believe my experience allows me to serve your needs better.

It is my hope that for you, the prospective parents, your desire for a child will be fulfilled soon.”