In the U.S. alone, there are 12 million single parents raising their children on their own.
But what happens to them if a devastating illness such as cancer strikes? What happens to their jobs, to their savings, to their children's welfare?
Suddenly they are in crisis which happened to a childhood friend of Jody's. "Making ends meet is insurmountable," Jody told CNN Heroes.
"There are so many doctors' appointments, copays, surgeries, prescriptions. And then the inability to work – any savings that there may have been is gone very quickly."
This is the story of what Jody did for her friend, and then the non-profit organization she set up that helps so many others in crisis today.
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Jody's friend Michelle Singleton, a mother of four children, at the age of 30 was diagnosed with breast cancer.
At the time, Jody had two children and understood what Michelle was going through.
"Paying the bills, cleaning her home, making dinner for her kids – all of that became a real struggle," said Jody. "I wanted to make things as easy as possible for her."
So when Jody did her own grocery shopping, she picked up groceries for her friend. And when she fixed dinner for her own family, she prepared dinner for Michelle and her children.
"I just tried to do those little things that I hoped would relieve her of some stress."
After Michelle passed away, Jody decided to help the many other single parents in crisis in the Phoenix, Arizona area where she lives.
In 2006, Jody started Singleton Moms, and to date it has helped 300 families in crisis.
Volunteers come to their homes and do the many every day necessary functions in life, from grocery shopping, to bill paying, to laundry.
And there is also a social side. Once a month everyone comes together to celebrate life.
There are games for the children, and snacks and a chance for the parents and the volunteers to socialize together.
Cancer is deadly serious but a little laughter and companionship can uplift the spirits of everyone involved and bring joy into their lives.