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Services - Poverty Simulation

Services - Poverty Simulation

Alabama has the seventh highest poverty rate in the nation. You see the face of poverty in your schools each and every day. But do you really know what it's like for a child struggling to focus at school while worrying if she will have food to eat when she gets home? Do you understand the challenges your students and their families face?

We know poverty impacts student achievement. These students often struggle to afford basic supplies or field trips and lack access to tutoring and extracurricular activities that deepen learning. Caring teachers and a high-quality education may be their last hope to escape the stifling cycle of poverty.

Are you prepared to fight this battle? Is your staff?

A Poverty Simulation offers a sobering glimpse into the day-to-day realities of families living in poverty. In 2.5 hours, you experience a month in poverty, taking on the identity of a family facing the complex challenges of a limited income. You will confront the chaos, fear and frustration that can accompany everyday tasks such as seeing a doctor or cashing a check. The simulation culminates in a guided debriefing session, engaging participants in the difficult, honest conversations necessary to not only build awareness and empathy but also to foster improvements in the way we work with and for our neediest students.


Poverty Simulation in Action:


Schedule a Poverty Simulation:

Contact AASB at  or 1-800-562-0601 to schedule a Poverty Simulation for your school or school system or to get answers to your questions about the Poverty Simulation. 

What You Need to Know

AASB brings the Poverty Simulation to you, guiding your teachers and staff through the experience and facilitating the group debriefing session. We recommend awarding 2.5 professional development credit hours for the simulation.


  • 30-80 participants
  • Approximately 20 volunteers
  • Large room (at least 3,000 square feet) 

What You Do

  • Select participants and volunteers
  • Provide suitable venue and furniture
  • Facility setup and breakdown

What We Do

  • Distribute and collect simulation materials
  • Lead the simulation
  • Facilitate the group debriefing 


$900 per session plus facilitator mileage and travel expenses.


Download the Poverty Simulation Brochure.

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