Poverty Initiatives

Hungry for Action

Hungry for Action in Huron is part of a larger initiative coordinated by the Ontario Society of Nutrition Professionals in Public Health. This initiative includes a survey of municipal candidates and a poverty simulation.

Hungry for Action in Huron is sponsored by the Poverty to Prosperity in Huron Network. Network partners include the Huron County Health Unit, Rural Response for Healthy Children, Huron County Social and Property Services, and the United Way Perth-Huron.

Hungry for Action Survey

Huron County is one of several counties in Ontario participating in a survey sent to municipal candidates. About 120 surveys have been sent out locally. Candidates are asked how they define poverty and what steps municipalities could take to tackle the issue.

Hungry for Action Poverty Simulation

In November 2014, candidates, along with local business leaders, were invited to the Hungry for Action poverty simulation in Clinton.

Municipal officials and local business leaders from across Huron County took part in this unique, interactive event. Taking on the role of a Huron County resident living in poverty, they made decisions, sought resources and discovered whether the cards of chance helped or hindered them.

What was the simulation like?

Participants arrived and were put into “family” groups. They were given an explanation of the family including a description of all members, ages, jobs, income, pets, etc. as well as the actual “smart” money to use during the game and envelopes to “pay expenses”. They also received information about housing costs, family expenses (entertainment, food, travel, school costs, and utilities) and were required to budget for the month.

Throughout the event, situation cards were given to the families that provided additional money or require them to pay for additional unplanned expenses in the same way that many families experience daily life. Many of these situations were linked to the various agencies.

At the end of the allotted time, a debriefing session was held to discuss how everyone came up with their final budget, how choices were made about which bills were paid, how they handled the unexpected cards and what people thought or felt during the experience.