The simulations, which are open to the public, are designed to help people understand the realities of poverty through role-playing activities. As in a real community, the roles and situations participants encounter may vary widely as the simulated families deal with real-life situations, including interactions with human service agencies, grocery store clerks, pawnbrokers and bill collectors. Families might range from single parent to domestic partners and from unemployed to a two-income household. Each family will experience four 15-minute "weeks" in which participants must engage in the daily duties of the person they are simulating.
CAPS participants learn about adverse circumstances that face heads of households, including the use by impoverished families of cash advances, whereby businesses take up to 10 percent of the salary in order to cash a paycheck. The simulation was designed to sensitize those who frequently deal with low-income families, as well as to create a broader awareness of the realities of poverty among policymakers, community leaders and others.
To participate or volunteer to run the simulation, contact Melissa Jackson, class of 2007 and AmeriCorps VISTA in the Office of Community Service, via e-mail at email@example.com by Monday, Nov. 3. Registration can also be done online by clicking here.
Written By: Ryan Maurer
Photo By: Robert Gantt
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