United Way hosts poverty simulation for community leaders - KULR8.com | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

United Way hosts poverty simulation for community leaders

Posted: Updated:
BILLINGS, Mont. -

United Way of Yellowstone County hosted a poverty simulation for lawmakers, local government, and community leaders in an effort to bring awareness to poverty in the county.

At United Way in Billings, participants got to experience a month in the life of someone living in poverty. Many leaders throughout the community participated in the poverty simulation, including people from Phillips 66, Riverstone Health, and Montana Rescue Mission.

Dean Wells is the impact analyst for United Way and talked about the simulation.

"It's an opportunity for participants throughout the community to really get a better idea of what it's like to live in poverty," Wells said.

People were set up in groups and given characters. Each character had a certain amount of money, their own hardships, and were told to try to climb the ladder. To help them, agencies such as Social Services, Health Care, and case workers were there.

"My character was a 19-year-old high school dropout and she had a one-year-old son and she was living with her 'live-in' boyfriend at the time," Theresa Truchot said. "She aspired to go back to school and get her GED."

Theresa Truchot is a United Way board member and a process engineer at Phillips 66 who said the poverty simulation was eye-opening.

"It was kind of heart-breaking because I felt like the character I was playing had a difficult time," Truchot said. "It was really impossible for her to have some of these goals or accomplishments that I think everyone should be entitled to."

Wells explained what the goal was for community leaders and the simulation.

"We wanted to increase understanding about people in poverty, but also that emotional basis of really understanding at the gut level what it's like to live in poverty and then take it to the next step of what is the action that we can take from that to help the issue of poverty," Wells said.

Wells said he hopes to do this simulation among other audiences at least two more times this year.

  • LocalMore>>

  • Rescue for Animal Shelter

    Rescue for Animal Shelter

    Sunday, May 20 2018 10:56 PM EDT2018-05-21 02:56:07 GMT

    People who adopt animals from shelters often call them “Rescues”. Park County’s entire animal shelter needs to be rescued. They’re dealing with mold, cats in tiny cages, and inadequate heating and cooling. 

    People who adopt animals from shelters often call them “Rescues”. Park County’s entire animal shelter needs to be rescued. They’re dealing with mold, cats in tiny cages, and inadequate heating and cooling. 

  • OUTDOOR REPORT: Making a career out of wildlife

    OUTDOOR REPORT: Making a career out of wildlife

    Sunday, May 20 2018 10:32 PM EDT2018-05-21 02:32:21 GMT
    In this week's Outdoor Report, Winston Greely introduces us to a wildlife biologist in South Central Montana, who has been at it for a really long time.
    In this week's Outdoor Report, Winston Greely introduces us to a wildlife biologist in South Central Montana, who has been at it for a really long time.
  • Board of Trustees reviews superintendent contract

    Board of Trustees reviews superintendent contract

    Sunday, May 20 2018 7:32 PM EDT2018-05-20 23:32:22 GMT

    Board of trustees will sit down with Mr. Greg Upham to discuss his duties he will serve as the new superintendent of school district 2. \

    Board of trustees will sit down with Mr. Greg Upham to discuss his duties he will serve as the new superintendent of school district 2. \

  • Most Popular

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Washington man suspected of murder arrested in Hardin

    Washington man suspected of murder arrested in Hardin

    Saturday, May 19 2018 7:27 PM EDT2018-05-19 23:27:05 GMT
    Jacob Ozuna: Courtesy of Q13, The Pacific Northwest Violent Offender Task ForceJacob Ozuna: Courtesy of Q13, The Pacific Northwest Violent Offender Task Force

    The Big Horn County Sheriff's Office has arrested and booked a man suspected of first degree murder Saturday. Jacob Ozuna fled the state of Washington. According to Q13 Fox, a Washington news station, The Pacific Northwest Violent Offender Task Force in Yakima said Ozuna is "a six-time convicted felon and a dangerous gang member." according to Q13, Ozuna, a.k.a "Kapone," has a $1 million dollar warrant for first degree murder along with two counts of  assaul...

    The Big Horn County Sheriff's Office has arrested and booked a man suspected of first degree murder Saturday. Jacob Ozuna fled the state of Washington. According to Q13 Fox, a Washington news station, The Pacific Northwest Violent Offender Task Force in Yakima said Ozuna is "a six-time convicted felon and a dangerous gang member." according to Q13, Ozuna, a.k.a "Kapone," has a $1 million dollar warrant for first degree murder along with two counts of  assaul...

  • Billings company develops technology to detect gunfire and notify authorities

    Billings company develops technology to detect gunfire and notify authorities

    Saturday, May 19 2018 10:14 AM EDT2018-05-19 14:14:23 GMT

    Billings company Shot Tracer has developed technology that can easily be installed in schools and other public buildings. The devices will detect gunfire and within seconds notify anyone with the app including local police.

    Billings company Shot Tracer has developed technology that can easily be installed in schools and other public buildings. The devices will detect gunfire and within seconds notify anyone with the app including local police.

  • Scenic Beartooth Highway on track to open Memorial Day weekend

    Scenic Beartooth Highway on track to open Memorial Day weekend

    Thursday, May 17 2018 5:53 PM EDT2018-05-17 21:53:53 GMT

    With snow levels as high as 26 feet, clearing Beartooth highway isn't an easy task.

    With snow levels as high as 26 feet, clearing Beartooth highway isn't an easy task.

  • Mom apparently jumps to death with 7-year-old son

    Mom apparently jumps to death with 7-year-old son

    Friday, May 18 2018 11:53 AM EDT2018-05-18 15:53:41 GMT

    NEW YORK (AP) - Police say a woman apparently jumped with her 7-year-old son from a window of a boutique hotel in New York City and both died. It's not clear how high up the pair were at the Gotham Hotel when they fell, but the 46-year-old woman and the boy were found on a lower roof or landing at about 8:15 a.m. on Friday. The victims were not immediately identified.   Hotel staff said they had no information.

    NEW YORK (AP) - Police say a woman apparently jumped with her 7-year-old son from a window of a boutique hotel in New York City and both died. It's not clear how high up the pair were at the Gotham Hotel when they fell, but the 46-year-old woman and the boy were found on a lower roof or landing at about 8:15 a.m. on Friday. The victims were not immediately identified.   Hotel staff said they had no information.

  • Bucking Horse Sale brings thousands to Miles City

    Bucking Horse Sale brings thousands to Miles City

    Saturday, May 19 2018 10:51 AM EDT2018-05-19 14:51:39 GMT

    Thousands of people are gathered this weekend in Miles City for the World Famous Bucking Horse Sale.

    Thousands of people are gathered this weekend in Miles City for the World Famous Bucking Horse Sale.

  • MSU Billings receives huge donation for new science building

    MSU Billings receives huge donation for new science building

    Saturday, May 19 2018 11:07 PM EDT2018-05-20 03:07:34 GMT

    MSU Billings celebrated the 26th year of the Wine & Food Festival. President CEO of the MSU Billings Foundation, Bill Kennedy, said Saturday night's turn out on the last day of the 2018 Wine & Food Festival was a success.

    MSU Billings celebrated the 26th year of the Wine & Food Festival. President CEO of the MSU Billings Foundation, Bill Kennedy, said Saturday night's turn out on the last day of the 2018 Wine & Food Festival was a success.

  • Livingston community concerned about safety when underpass floods

    Livingston community concerned about safety when underpass floods

    Friday, May 18 2018 8:40 PM EDT2018-05-19 00:40:05 GMT

    A thunderstorm over Livingston, Thursday caused some flash flooding around the community.  But it was the flooding that forced the closure of the underpass on North Main Street that really had people talking. 

    A thunderstorm over Livingston, Thursday caused some flash flooding around the community.  But it was the flooding that forced the closure of the underpass on North Main Street that really had people talking. 

  • Day one of the Bucking Horse Sale event

    Day one of the Bucking Horse Sale event

    Saturday, May 19 2018 1:45 PM EDT2018-05-19 17:45:18 GMT

    Hundreds of people attended the world famous bucking horse sale event!

    Hundreds of people attended the world famous bucking horse sale event!