Waco, Texas

Located midway between Austin and Dallas, the city of Waco was built around the Waco Suspension Bridge along the Brazos River.  A small city in McLennan County with a population of 127,796 people, Waco has significant economic problems.

23% of adults over 25 have no high school diploma, and for this group in particular, jobs paying more than minimum wage are hard to find.  Although Waco is home to three Texas colleges and universities, jobs for graduates are sparse and job seekers travel to Austin and Dallas for better employment.

Without a car commuting is difficult, because public transportation is inadequate and local bus service ends at 7pm.

Divided into three sectors, the sector of East Waco has the poorest population.  According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in East Waco:

  • Median annual household income is $15,190
  • 34.9% of households have a single female head of household (mainly single mothers)
  • Median household income is lower than 70% of the median household income for all of Texas

In all of Waco:

  • 29.4% of individuals live below the poverty level.
  • 30.9% of families with children under 18 live below the poverty level.

According to the FBI Uniform Crime Rate 2008 data, Waco has a crime rate of 59 per one thousand residents, one of the highest crime rates in the U.S.  The chances of becoming a victim of either a violent crime or a property crime in Waco is one in 17.

Shirley Langston, founder of Restoration Haven, is F-to-F’s contact and partner in Waco. Restoration Haven offers struggling families much needed basic necessities along with life skills classes, tutoring and counseling. With its office located in a public housing unit, Shirley has an opportunity to build close relationships with the families she helps.

In Waco, Family-to-Family partners with H-E-B markets to provide groceries for our sponsored families.

Community Contact:
Shirley Langston
Restoration Haven
600 Calumet St.
Waco, Texas, 76704

Learn more about poverty in the Waco community.

Waco: People witness poverty first hand during simulation

Sources: Waco Texas Executive Study; US Census Bureau, 2010 Census; U.S. Census Bureau, 2010-2014 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates

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