Single mothers in the US have tripled since 1960, causing a seismic shift in family structure. Today there are 12 million single-parent families in the US, more than 80 percent of which are headed by single mothers. In fact, New York is home to one of only five counties in the country where the percentage of households run by single mothers is greater than 30 percent (Bronx).
This Mother’s Day, Babble and family documentary photographer Ahna Tessler seek to honor these New Yorkers whose sacrifices often go uncelebrated. They asked local moms the question: “What’s the one thing every mom would save in a fire?” Their answer: photos of their loved ones. Most mothers – especially low-income single mothers – are noticeably absent in these valuable family photos because they are often the ones capturing the moment.
To give these families a moment they’ll never forget, Ahna documented 23 single mothers’ powerful stories. The video above reveals a rarely seen vignette of the lives of single mothers living in the New York –the joys and sorrows, and why these New York moms believe it’s worth it.