CARE: Christian Action, Research and Education

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At the very beginning, God created the family as one of the great building blocks in society. He also established marriage from the dawn of creation, and He officiated at the first ever wedding service. Strong families are foundational to a healthy society. Marriages too are vital, representing the gold standard of commitment. CARE is committed to upholding both.

Our vision is to see society transformed by families being strengthened and more support being given to help couples stay together. We also want to see the current discrimination in our tax system against one-earner married couples with two children ended and marriage made a more financially appealing option for all.

Topic primer

Christians love and believe in the importance of marriage. It is a key social institution and is good for the family and for society as a whole. Marriage is a gift from God and a high calling which should be respected and honoured by all. At CARE, we are committed to the view that understands marriage to be the voluntary union between one man and one woman, for life, forsaking all others. While to some this may seem old fashioned, we believe this is the way marriage was intended to be. Right across the globe, many different cultures all recognise the value and significance of the marriage union.

If you look at the available evidence, it clearly shows that marriage is good for children, good for adults and good for whole communities. The wellbeing of those involved in marriage is higher than those who are not. Marriage, therefore, brings with it benefits which go far beyond the fulfilment of romantic love. It teaches commitment at an incredibly deep level which, in turn, produces trust, security and support.

Where marriage is honoured, society thrives. If you look at what has happened in the last decades in the UK, we’ve seen family breakdown grow enormously. The awful reality is that many teenagers are more likely to own a smartphone than have a dad at home. The emotional cost of family breakdown is bad enough. But there is also an economic cost as well. Each year, it is estimated that family breakdown costs in the region of £50bn. This is more than some major Government departments have in their spending budgets.

The result of undermining marriage is the ruination of the family unit. The consequence of this is devastating for young people and their life chances. As Christians we should seek the good of our society. Convinced, as we are, that God’s ways are good for the whole of society, we should support and uphold marriage and the family as God’s better way for society to function.

CARE has been advocating for greater recognition of marriage in the tax system for a number of years. We’ve been producing annual reports for more than a decade. Alongside this work, we have also supported proposals for a Family Test to ensure all domestic policies do not undermine family life. Recent attempts have been made to introduce so called ‘no-fault’ divorce which would make obtaining a divorce even easier. Working with MPs we have raised awareness in the House of Commons on the risks associated with such a move.

Keep reading

There is more to read from CARE's perspective

Tim Keller
Real love, the Bible says, instinct­ively desires permanence
Tim Keller Pastor and author of The Meaning of Marriage


For many years, CARE has been at the forefront of research on how families fare in the UK tax and benefits system, both domestically and internationally. Here you will find our latest research.

Apply for the Married Tax Allowance

Apply for the Mar­ried Tax Allowance

The Married Tax Allowance is free to apply for. Eligible couples can save up to £252 a year and it's possible to apply for backdated pay.

Apply today
Marriage rates are declining. How worried should we be?

Mar­riage rates are declin­ing. How wor­ried should we be?

In this deep dive, CARE's James Mildred looks at declining marriage rates and considers how we should respond.

Read more
The Taxation of UK Families 2021 Including International Comparisons for 2020

The Tax­a­tion of UK Fam­il­ies 2021 Includ­ing Inter­na­tion­al Com­par­is­ons for 2020

This report highlights that a shift in Government policy is needed. What the UK needs is a tax system that is fair, and which does not trap people in poverty even We recognise that the change called for in this report will come at a cost and will be complex, but as a society we should always strive for what is fair, even if its difficult to achieve.

Download the report
A Fairer Share

A Fairer Share

How rethinking income tax can free families from poverty

A new report from CARE for Scotland and Tax and Family examines how the Scottish Government can ensure the tax burden is more evenly distributed, by taking account of families and ultimately lifting more out of poverty.

Our guide to new relationships and sex education in England

Our guide to new rela­tion­ships and sex edu­ca­tion in England

RSE Guide

In March 2017 the UK Parliament voted to change the way sex education is taught in schools in England, introducing the new subject of relationships education in primary schools and changing sex education at secondary school to be relationships and sex education (RSE).

Download our guide
National Marriage Week 2020: Stories from CARE Staff

Nation­al Mar­riage Week 2020: Stor­ies from CARE Staff

CARE Staff

CARE celebrated National Marriage Week 2020 with the story of Lyndon & Celia Bowring, and blogs on marriage from CARE staff.

Read More
Centre for Social Justice
Fam­ily envir­on­ment is cru­cial to children’s out­comes. It is the instabil­ity and dis­rup­tion caused by fam­ily break­down, coupled with poor par­ent­ing, that is so dam­aging to their outcomes.
Centre for Social Justice

Recent marriage and family news

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Parents have right to see sex education material, says minister

The Education Secretary Gillian Keegan has written to English schools that they must respect parents' legal right to view the sex education material which is being taught.

Read article
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More than 70 MPs back new law on parental access to RSE material

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11 Bishops refuse to endorse plans to bless same-sex couples

Dad with child on his shoulders

Fathers have positive impact on children's educational outcomes

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Married parents more likely to stay together, report shows


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Need help with finances and managing your family's budget?

Christians Against Poverty (CAP) are a national charity, working across the UK to lift people out of debt and poverty. They offer free debt counselling through a network of 260 debt centres based in local churches.

Find out more
Sam Allberry
Mar­riage shows us the unity of the gos­pel. Single­ness shows us its sufficiency.
Sam Allberry Editor for The Gospel Coalition and a global speaker for RZIM.
Take action

You can make a difference today.

Together we can make a difference shaping our culture and society. Here are three things you can do right now…


Our God answers prayer and we want to pray for marriages and families across our nation

Pray with us


Contact your MP and ask them to oppose the relaxation of Sunday trading laws

Write to your MP


Find out more about CARE's work on supporting families

Find out more