Students spend an hour in someone's shoes with poverty simulation
Poverty is an issue that is happening worldwide, but is prevalent in the Elon community. To raise awareness about what it feels like to be impoverished, Elon hosted a poverty simulation in McKinnon Hall this morning, Jan. 9. Each student that participated received a new identity, along with a family, a budget and bills to pay.
Fifteen minutes represented a week of rushing around the room trying to pay bills, make money, and survive each week. The rush of the 15 minutes to represent a week was so the participants can really feel the stress of being impoverished, and that got through to senior Brianna Cauthen.
"I knew about poverty and I have some close family and friends that are impoverished so this was just me being able to stand in their shoes for a few hours, and see that the stress and anxiety, and all of those things are real. So I really came away really wanting to further my passions," Cauthen said.
After the simulation there was a discussion where students voiced what was hard and what worked well with their families. A majority of the students found that they could not afford to eat for a week, or they had to turn off one of their utilities in order to buy other necessary items.
Following the discussion there was a presentation that put the topic of poverty into reality. It showed numbers of poverty nationwide, in North Carolina and in Alamance County.