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Walk in less fortunate shoes for a day
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SAVANNAH — Step Up Savannah, Inc. and Hands On Savannah of the United Way of the Coastal Empire are partnering to host a poverty simulation Friday, Feb. 19.

The simulation is open to the public and will take place from 9 a.m.-11:30 a.m., at the Center for Professional and Continuing Education, Armstrong Atlantic State University.

More than 27,000 people in Savannah live at or below the federal poverty level. Most are considered the "working poor," only receiving minimum wage. The poverty simulation experience is designed to help participants begin to understand what it might be like to live in a typical low-income family trying to survive from month to month.

The simulation requires groups of 35 to 75 people to assume the roles of families living in poverty. The goal of each family is to survive for one month, which takes place in four 15-minute "weeks." In this time, participants must maintain secure shelter, utilities, feed their families, make loan payments, meet living expenses such as transportation, handle unexpected emergencies, access local support services, and keep their children in school – all while subsisting at or below the poverty level.

The simulation is open to anyone who wants to learn more about what it’s like to live in poverty in our community. Participation is free but registration is required.

To register for the Feb. 19 simulation at AASU, call Shawnte Tyler at (912) 232-6747 or e-mail

If you have been through a simulation and would like to volunteer for this or future simulations, call Hands On Savannah at 651-7726.

Hands On Savannah helps individuals, families and corporate and community groups find volunteer opportunities at more than 100 service organizations and schools in our four-county area. To find a volunteer project, go to

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