Local Poverty Simulator Project to be held at Penn State Shenango

Penn State Shenango in conjunction with Community Action Program and Community Food Warehouse will host its second local Poverty Simulator event from 4 to 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 6, in the Penn State Shenango auditorium located in downtown Sharon, Pa.

Through the Community Action Poverty Simulation (CAPS), Penn State Shenango faculty, staff, and students, as well as local business people, and local and state representatives, will experience what it is like to walk in the shoes of those who live in poverty every day.

The CAPS provides participants with the opportunity to assume the role of a low-income family member living on a limited budget. The experience is divided into four 15-minute sessions, each of which represents one week in which you must provide for your family and maintain your home. As one participant commented, “This poverty simulation dramatically demonstrates how much time and energy many families have to give just to survive from day to day. It quickly dispels the myth 'that people would do fine if they would only go out and get a job!’”

Forty-six million Americans, 13 million of whom are children younger than 18, live in poverty every day. Many more have incomes above the poverty line, but their incomes are still low enough to qualify for Food Stamps and Medicaid. The recent downturn has seen unemployment rates rise and the use of emergency food pantries increase.

The facilitator of this semester’s event is Penn State Shenango Human Development and Family Study program student Amy Hooks from Greenville, Pa. Hooks is a senior in the campus’ HDFS program, president of the Student Government Association, a member of the campus’ honors program and the mother of four children.

Hooks is excited to be this year’s facilitator and looks forward to working with her peers in the HDFS program as well as students from other campus majors to enlighten them on what it’s like to survive daily on very little and to be judged by those you depend on.  

Note: This event is not open to the community; however, the media is welcome to attend. For more information, contact Liz Izenas at 724-983-2906.


Last Updated September 05, 2013