University of Mary students experience the virtual realities of poverty.
Faculty and students from the Social Work Program host a Poverty Simulation to give students an idea of what it's like to live on a tight budget.
<<There's no doubt living in poverty is stressful.
"Ten dollars for food, ten dollars for clothing for all of us," Katie Tisi said.
Even though parents might have jobs, there might not be enough money to pay all the bills.
University of Mary students are stepping into the shoes of a person living in poverty.
"Some people go to work, some people need to find a job, some need to apply for food stamps, some need to go to school and they're just trying to make ends meet by facing the difficulties of transportation," Ethan Hoepfner said.
"Lets do thirty towards the weekly payment," Tisi said.
Katie Tisi is part of the Kaminski household, a family struggling to make ends meet.
"We are not able to get to our jobs or to pay our loans, we can't go anywhere to pay them, right now all we have is food basically," Tisi said.
The goal of the simulation is to give students an idea of how common poverty is, and how hard it is to live the lifestyle.
"As a person you always stereotype people who are in poverty that they just don't work and they just lay around and don't go out and try and get jobs but really what I'm learning so far is that people have jobs they just don't have the resources to make it on time or they try to get ahead but there's something that pushes them back," Tisi said.
"Stepping in their shoes and seeing what they face on a daily basis, the struggles that come with it and breaking those stereotypes," Hoepfner said.
"Alright lets sit down and talk it out," Tisi said.
"I'm really lucky to live the life that I do, I guess you don't think about how difficult it is to live with stuff like this," Katie Prokott said.
Giving students an understanding of how important basic essentials are to families who are working to make ends meet.>>
In North Dakota 20,000 children under the age of 18 live in poverty.
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