Can you Survive a Month in Poverty?

Sep 06, 2012, 09:30 ET from Catholic Charities USA

Simulation Creates Greater Awareness of Reality Facing Millions of Individuals in this Country

ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Catholic Charities USA, among the nation's leading organizations in poverty reduction and disaster response, will be hosting a poverty simulation preceding this year's Poverty Summit, taking place this year in Washington, D.C. on September 21st and 22nd.


Facilitated by Step-Up Silicon Valley, an innovative partnership that aims to reduce poverty in San Jose, California, the poverty simulation is designed to replicate the experience of a typical low-income family trying to survive.  Participants will face the real challenges that families and individuals at the margins face every day – finding child care, providing food, making rent and utility payments, and navigating the complex and contradictory eligibility requirements.

"We must remember that the millions of individuals living in poverty represent children, single parents, and families, living in communities across the country," said Fr. Larry Snyder, President of Catholic Charities USA. "This simulation is a unique opportunity for participants to literally put themselves in the shoes of those less fortunate and understand the complexities and frustrations of living in poverty day-to-day."

Although participants will be acting out roles, this simulation is not a skit or a game, but instead an experience enabling participants to look at poverty from a variety of angles and then to recognize and discuss the potential for change within their local communities. 

About the Poverty Summit: The Poverty Summit--first held in 2011 in conjunction with the Catholic Charities Annual Gathering and being hosted this year by steering committee member CFED --brings together national leaders, local experts, practitioners, volunteers, advocates, academics and others to advance the work that needs to be done to reduce poverty in America.

For additional information on the Poverty Summit, please visit 

Catholic Charities USA's members provide help and create hope for more than 10 million people a year regardless of religious, social, or economic backgrounds. For almost 300 years, Catholic Charities agencies have worked to reduce poverty by providing a myriad of vital services in their communities, ranging from health care and job training to food and housing. In 2010, Catholic Charities USA celebrated its centennial anniversary.

SOURCE Catholic Charities USA