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This assignment explores poverty from a practical perspective- the cost of living. Include information from this week’s readings to support, enhance, or further develop your response. 
For this assignment, follow the steps below, to develop a hypothetical, but practical, budget for the identified family. Then, respond to the two questions at the end of the assignment. Submit your budget as an attachment and respond to the questions in the discussion area. There is a sample budget located in the Additional Readings and Resources section. This sample is also available online at the Economic Policy Institute Basic Family Budget Calculator webpage, Family Budget Calculator (https://www.epi.org/resources/budget/).
A vignette in this chapter (Chapter 3, pg. 127, in italics, directly above the section heading, “Conclusion”) describes Tonya, a single mother with two children (a three-year-old son and a six-year-old daughter). Develop an estimated budget that would be required for Tonya and her two children to live for one month. Follow the attached Monthly Budget Guide for categories to include. This guide is also available on the Family Budget Calculator link above. You can obtain budget estimates for different family sizes in your City, State, and County. The Family Budget Map is also a resource. 
This budget that you develop should not reflect a luxurious lifestyle or a life at a bare minimum, but rather should show what you believe are essentials for living and their costs for the month. For each basic human need, enter an amount that you think is a true monthly cost, regardless of who would pay for it. For example, the cost of food will be the same if the family receives food stamps or not. In actuality, the family may not have the resources to purchase that amount of food, but it is still a cost. The costs are estimates based on your perspective or State. They don’t need to be precise. The purpose is to compare this to TANF. 

Discussion Prompts: 
1. How does the budget that you created compare with the online estimates for your City or State and with the amount of TANF your state provides? Discuss how this issue relates to information in the course readings this week.  
2. What is not included in this budget that many families would consider important investments in their childrens current and future well-being? What might be the long-term implications, for Tonyas children, of her inability to invest in these ways?
Discuss how this issue relates to information from the course readings this week. 
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