A Poverty Simulation is a realistic portrayal of living in a low income household for “one month.” Participants are assigned roles in households that have been based on real families receiving services from community action agencies.
During the simulation, family members will go through four “weeks”- broken into four, fifteen minute blocks of time during which they interact in a simulated community which includes a grocery store, bank, utilities company, mortgage/rent collector, pawn shop, employer, school, social services office, community action agency and more. At the end of the simulation, participants are invited to share their experiences. Did they make ends meet financially? If not, what were the consequences? Did the exercise change the way they think about those in poverty? Will they be motivated to get involved?
It was a wonderful morning connecting with our colleagues and re-grounding ourselves in the challenging and critical work we all do as we fight the causes and effects of poverty in our community.