Help Single Parents Thrive

Support Single Parents

Give single parents a chance

Single parents work hard to do the best for their families, but too many are still struggling with poverty, loneliness and social stigma.

We want every single parent to be aware of the services we provide, and to know that we are just a phone call or a message away. Read more about how donations help us to do this.


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Single parents are great. They work so hard to make ends meet. They raise brilliant children. They achieve great things.

But the situation is extremely difficult for single parents and their families. Despite their hard work, inflexible hours and a lack of access to affordable childcare means that many can only work limited hours. 68% of single parents entering the workforce enter the lowest three occupation groups.

Along with the fact that less than half of single parents receive child maintenance, this means that many single parents aren’t able to put any money aside for rainy days, facing a constant struggle to scrape enough together to pay the bills, put food on the table and simply to survive.

And this trickles down: children in single parent families are twice as likely to live in poverty as children living in two parent households.

Single Parent Quote

Single parenthood also makes it difficult to socialise. Friends without children can drift away, thinking they will be too busy; other parent friends often can’t relate to the issues faced by those going it alone, or arrange activities that are too expensive to take part in on a low income.

Single Parent Quote

And despite many people thinking it’s a thing of the past, single parents continue to experience stigma: in society, in the media and from institutions. In fact, nearly three quarters of single parents report having experienced stereotyping or prejudice.

So while the stereotypes of single parents being unemployed, young women on benefits, the reality is over two thirds are working, 10% of single parents are men and the average age of a single parent is 38.

Even with these facts, single parents deal with the ramifications of this stigma every day as they try and navigate through the workplace, the government and society as a whole.

Single Parent Quote

Single dad family

Despite how hard single parents work to do the best for their families, they still face longstanding issues as well as new obstacles.

This is where Gingerbread can make a difference.

Building on over 100 years of expertise from working with single parents, Gingerbread has been at the forefront of shaping policy and services that support single parents and their families. We support single parents through every step of their journey, providing stability from the moment of separation to maximising the choices and opportunities for single parent families to thrive, and then to building acceptance and celebration of diverse families in wider society.

Our services make a real difference to those who use them:

Our peer support groups and online forum have created bonds between isolated individuals, offering safe spaces for single parents to share their stories, and in turn, boost each other to achieve great things.

Single dad family

And our campaigning work has led to key wins, including work around the Child Maintenance Service, childcare, and fairer family holiday ticket prices for single parent families. With the landscape ever changing, Gingerbread will strive to continue to be on the frontline, amplifying the voices and experiences of single parents.

But, unfortunately, we can’t be there for every single parent who needs us most…

We believe that every single parent should have the tools and support to overcome the hurdles they face in their life. We want every single parent to be aware of the services we provide, and to know that we are just a phone call or a message away. We want them to have access to professional advice, the opportunity to create friendships without judgement, and to feel empowered to make a change in wider society.

And for that we need your support.

By making a small monthly donation, you can make a difference. You can help us to ensure every single parent across England and Wales is able to access:

Peer Support

Support more single parents today