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Phoenixville Bridges Out of Poverty Simulation

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Westminster Presbyterian Church

10 West Pleasant Grove Road

West Chester, PA 19382

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Bridges Out of Poverty: Poverty Simulation

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The Poverty Simulation breaks down stereotypes by allowing participants to step into the real life situations of others. Poverty is often portrayed as a stand-alone issue - but this simulation allows individuals to walk a month in the shoes of someone who is facing poverty and realize how complex and interconnected issues of poverty really are. • A single parent with limited resources and no transportation must find a way to get to work and get their child to daycare. • An elderly person must find a way to pay for both utilities and medication. • A young adult must care for siblings while their parent is incarcerated. • An elderly couple must raise their grandchildren and deal with their own health and employment issues. The simulation involves participants who take on the roles of members of up to 26 families, all facing a variety of challenging, but typical, circumstances. To start the simulation exercise, each family is given a card explaining its unique circumstances. It is then the families’ task to provide food, shelter, and other basic necessities by accessing various community resources during the course of four 15-minute “weeks.” Participants are seated in family groups and community resources are located at tables around the perimeter of the room. The facilitator opens the simulation with an orientation to the activity, goes over ground rules, and answers participant questions during the exercise. The activity lasts about two and a half hours. This time frame includes an introduction and briefing by the facilitator, the simulation exercise, and a guided debriefing in which participants and volunteers share their observations and insights from the activity. The Poverty Simulation is a tool that helps participants rethink the challenges that millions of low income individuals must face each and every day. More importantly, this tool helps people identify areas of change that can directly impact the effects of poverty on individuals, families and communities.

Bridges Out of Poverty provides a family of concepts and workshops to help employers, community organizations, churches, social service agencies, and individuals to develop a common language and reduce poverty in a comprehensive way. Each workshop is FREE TO ATTEND (A tax deductible donation of $15 for materials is appreciated)

This is part of a local initiative to bring a national program of community and participant education programs aimed at building long term sustainability for individuals and the Greater Phoenixville Community. For more information, please contact Orion Communities at 610-415-1140 or email KKeller@OrionCommunities.org or Theresa@MissKittysCare.com.

*Refreshments will be provided*

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Westminster Presbyterian Church

10 West Pleasant Grove Road

West Chester, PA 19382

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