|Photos by Reza Marvashti|
Orlando Atencio, 26, holds his daughter Santiana, 2, outside the family home in Grand Junction. The dedicated father and husband, who was laid off, spends most of his time at home with his seven children
The number of children under the age of 18 who live below the poverty line in the United States increased by 9% between 2000 and 2006. In Colorado, the number of children living in poverty grew by 72%, the highest rate increase in the nation. These are the stories of some of those children. This Denver Post documentary project provides a window into the lives of eight families living below the poverty line. To see more photos and videos of the families, visit the multimedia project on denverpost.com.
The Atencio Family, Photos by Reza Marvashti
Ron and Vickie Atencio’s modest Grand Junction house and an adjacent RV are home to 27 people, including 13 children. The Atencios’ three sons – victims of layoffs in the energy industry – and their families comprise most of the household. The living room transforms into a bedroom at night for many of the children, and fixing meals is an adventure. Alicia Atencio, the wife of one of the sons, said it’s like cooking for an army.