The weather changing is a topic of conversation everywhere in Central Indiana. The coats are coming out and the heat is being turned on for the first time since late spring. For many people, these are just little realities, chatter among friends or coworkers that is soon forgotten. For some families, however, the increased costs associated with the drop in temperature can be a major stressor, and the difference between barely getting by and destitution.

But the weather change is not the only topic of interest at this time of year. Of course, with the holidays fast approaching, it’s a great time to take stock and be grateful for what we have in our lives. And as we examine the things for which we are grateful, it is important to keep in mind that not all of our neighbors are so fortunate. It’s too easy to allow ourselves to be consumed by our own industry microcosm and forget to pay attention to the rest of the ecosystem, especially those who are suffering.

There is a special and powerful opportunity for all of our friends and colleagues in the tech community to get a much better understanding of the significant and complicated challenges of poverty. TechPoint has partnered with the United Way of Central Indiana to co-host three poverty simulations conducted at three different technology companies in central Indiana—and you are encouraged to attend.

“I think people will be surprised at how enlightening these poverty simulation events are,” said Lauren Petersen, senior director of relationship management for TechPoint and a United Way of Central Indiana board member. “As a tech community, we’re thriving, and I think we have a responsibility to learn about our neighbors who are struggling and see how we can help and be part of the solution.”

Because this is our third year in a row doing poverty simulations in partnership with the United Way of Central Indiana, we’re recommending that you bring at least two friends or colleagues along with you to one of the three different simulations. (More than three friends or colleagues attending together is great too!)

Register today for one of three upcoming poverty simulations hosted by tech community employers that are dedicated to being part of the solution. They include:

Wednesday, November 20, 2019, 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Hosted by hc1
6100 Technology Center Dr, Bldg. K, Indianapolis, IN 46278
Register Here

Thursday, November 21, 2019, 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Hosted by Schneider Geospatial
8901 Otis Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46216
Register Here

Monday, December 9, 2019, 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Hosted by Angie’s List
130 E. Washington Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204
Register Here

What can you expect to learn from attending a poverty simulation?

People who attend a poverty simulation can increase their understanding of the dynamics of poverty and experience on a small scale the struggles many people in Central Indiana face on a daily basis. The poverty simulation event itself is experiential, it’s interactive, and it really opens people’s eyes to what it’s like to live with limited resources. It offers a glimpse into the struggles and decision-making process people living in Central Indiana go through while teetering on the edge, just one paycheck, just one illness, or just one car breakdown away from a personal catastrophe.

What will you actually do at a poverty simulation?

During the simulation, participants assume the role of a family member living on a limited budget, navigating through unforeseen circumstances. Then, participants learn about the services and opportunities that people living in poverty can utilize to become more self-sufficient. It is a very hands-on experience with educational elements presented by a facilitator. The hope is that participants will join us to become more aware of the complexities of poverty and learn how they can get involved in being part of the solution.