Lakes Area United Way Holds Poverty Simulation for Area Non-Profits
Lakes Area United Way partnered with Lakes Area Habitat for Humanity and Mid Minnesota Federal Credit Union on Wednesday to present a poverty simulation for non-profit executives and board members at The Woods in Brainerd.
The day was about bringing awareness to individuals struggling with poverty and showing directors and board members what it’s like to be in their situation.
The main activity was a simulation where groups of people were made to act as a family and have each person play a certain role. Throughout the simulation, they pay for things like rent or a car payment, and if they didn’t have a car, they would need to buy bus passes. They also had to figure out how to get to work on time while getting the kids to school, among many other life obstacles.
Some people dealing with poverty have a lot on their schedule to take care of and can never get ahead because of multiple issues they may be burdened with. An unfortunate (and common) misconception is that people can always find better, like a better job. Some people assume others are lazy and don’t want to work, but depending on their situation, many who work more than one job still can’t find the money they need or have reliable transportation.
Crow Wing County Social Services has many resources to help, but there can be a stigma attached to seeking help, which is why people might be hesitant to reach out. Some people are afraid to seek help because of what others think or have too much pride.
The event and poverty simulation was made possible with a grant given by the Mid Minnesota Federal Credit Union Foundation.