A Humbling Experience – Walking a mile in their shoes

Leadership Medina County spent Human Services Day walking a mile in the shoes of people living in poverty. The following are some comments from the day.

I was a 10 year old during the poverty simulation and I watched how stressed out my “parents” were just trying to take care of everything. There wasn’t enough time each day to complete the necessary tasks, and they lived in “crisis” mode. – Ruth Crane

I loved listening to Ryan’s point of view. I wish everyone had his view of surrounding themselves with positive and avoiding the negative. Jenn Moore

With my job, I’m quite familiar with poverty and how in impacts Medina County residents. From the stress they have, the difficulties they face, and the feelings of frustration they have when they are trying so hard to make their situation better. While I have the knowledge on how to navigate, access services, and an understanding of what individuals face; the poverty simulation was still very stressful. It was a humbling experience and further sparks my desire to make a difference in individuals lives we serve. Pamela Crombie

I was amazed at the variety of services available to those in need. I also appreciated hearing about the collaboration among all the human services departments, just as it was learned on safety services day. It was also interesting in hearing the junior leadership’s perspectives on the poverty simulation…they thought it was really stressful. I think more because of the responsibility and planning of it all than the poverty aspect. Carey Bates


The simulation forced me to work through the day to day struggles of those in poverty. The compounding effect of life’s problems is a real issue when you don’t have access to housing, employment, food and medical care. Matt McKelvy

The services available to people in need demonstrates how much this county cares about helping others. Kimberly Oliver

My aha moment was at the MCBDD. I didn’t realize the size of the facility and the age groups that they help. They do a tremendous service for the county and it was incredible to see (and hear directly) how they positively affect their students. Joe Zingaro

It is hard to pinpoint just one moment of impact in our day. I appreciated Amber’s vulnerability in sharing the many facets of her story with us and the impact various social and human services had on her survival. The poverty simulation was eye-opening, especially related to transportation issues. I was cast as a child so I don’t think I got the full impact of the tough decisions that needed to be made, though. The work of the Children’s Center is much-needed so that children who are abused only need to tell their story once. I didn’t know this program existed. As a survivor of childhood sexual abuse myself, I am grateful for the way in which children in our county are treated in these circumstances. The whole day was very good — very full with lots of information, but all very relevant. Robin Dillon

My aha moment was the poverty simulation. Despite working in the Human Services field, and understanding the impact poverty has on families, it is impossible to fully comprehend the difficult decisions these families have to make every single day. Drew Hall

After the poverty simulation and meeting with the folks at Windfall, I came away with an equal sense of frustration at all the obstacles of poverty and a sense of optimism that the lives of people with disabilities are incrementally improving with greater understanding and better programs. Nancy Peacock


Leave a Comment