Poverty simulation to be held on campus

Poverty GLP

HAYS, Kan. -- The Global Leadership Project at Fort Hays State University will host a community action poverty simulation (CAPS) at 1p.m. Saturday, Feb. 4, in the Fort Hays Ballroom in the Memorial Union. This learning tool was created as a way to help people understand the realities of poverty. Three billion people in the world live in poverty, or on less than $2.50 a day.

During the simulation, participants role-play the lives of low-income families; some are Temporary Assistance to Needy Families recipients, some are disabled, and some are senior citizens on Social Security.

Participants will have the stressful task of providing for basic necessities and shelter on a limited budget during the course of four 15-minute "weeks." They will interact with human service agencies, grocers, pawnbrokers, bill collectors, job interviewers, police officers, and others.

Although play money is used, CAPS is not a game. It is a simulation that enables participants to look at poverty from a variety of angles, and then to recognize and discuss the potential for change within their local communities.

The simulation was designed to sensitize to the realities of poverty those who frequently interact with low-income families, and to create a broader awareness of poverty among policy makers, community leaders, and others.

CAPS is presented utilizing a kit purchased from the Missouri Community Action Network. The kit was funded by the Psychology Club, the Departments of Philosophy, Political Science, Leadership Studies, Applied Business Studies, and the Center for Civic Leadership.

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