Our vision is of a society in which single parents are valued, and where they – as well as their children – are treated equally and fairly. There are two million single parents in Britain – one in four families with children. Financial insecurity, stigma and social isolation are issues faced by many single parents today, and our work focuses on reducing these challenges.
We support single parent families in lots of different ways, so we measure our impact across the range of services we provide. We understand just how diverse single parents are, and our support takes account of their differences as well as their common experiences.
Impact evaluation of our work in 2015 demonstrates that, after joining Gingerbread:
- 74% of single parents knew where to get help
- 67% felt more able to deal with problems
- 58% felt they had someone to talk to
- 60% felt more positive or optimistic.
You can find out more about our work and finances in our annual report and accounts.
Impact of our information
More than 800,000 people access our website each year – and that’s more than doubled in the past five years.
We build our library of online information in response to changes in policy that will affect single parents, as well as with stories and news we receive from single parents.
Having the information I need to hand makes life less stressful, which in turn benefits my children.Single parent on our online information
Impact of our helpline
Our free single parent helpline is one of our most vital channels of support. Each year, we help more than 9,000 parents address complex financial, emotional, and practical needs through our helpline, averaging 17 minutes per call.
I know you are there for me. When I need advice or just information I know I can rely on Gingerbread.Single parent who used our helpline
Impact of our learning, skills and employment projects
Gingerbread supports around 1,000 single parents each year through our training programmes. We offer a range of services to help single parent feel ready to work – from CV writing workshops, to interview preparation, and financial capability training to help with budgeting.
On average, two single parents secure a job every working day with our help.
Your programme really helped me, boosted my confidence and gave me the willpower to go out there and do what I enjoy. I am now employed full-time as a care worker.Gina, single mum on our Marks & Start programme
My children are my number one priority, but my life does not revolve around tidying up and being at home anymore! I discovered that I can do it - I can hold everything together.Karen, single mum on the impact of our employment training programme
Impact of our peer support
We know single parenting can often feel lonely. Sometimes, speaking to someone else in the same situation can make a world of difference.
89 Gingerbread friendship groups in England and Wales bring single parents together. Through our groups – coordinated by volunteers – single mums and dads offer support to each other.
We also offer an online space for single parents to speak. Our forum is a safe space just for single parents – where they can speak freely and honestly about struggles they are facing or pose questions to peers.
Impact of our policy and campaigns
Since 1918, we’ve been supporting single parents to have a say in the issues affecting their lives. Working directly with parliamentarians, policy-makers and the media, together, we’ve been instrumental in influencing government policy and challenging social stigma.
Our achievements have focused on areas including child maintenance, where we’ve successfully called for new ways to close loopholes, tackle payment avoidance, and reduce charges to access the CMS, as well as make domestic violence training mandatory for all CMS staff.
We’ve made big strides against cuts to working tax credits, partnered with the End Child Poverty Coalition to maintain income in government measures of child poverty, and played a direct role in London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s introduction of a new childcare deposit scheme with our Upfront campaign.
Recently, We Are The 1 in 4 worked to highlight the issue of single parent families being out-priced out of standard family deals across the leisure industries, while we celebrated the incredible achievements of our community through Single Parent Strength.
Shout loud. Be heard. Go to the top. Don't give up. Believe in people justice.Single Parent Campaigner