Visitors to the pristine premises of the Christian Centre in Hanover Road on Saturday were shocked to find it had been transformed into a slum. The event, organised by Churches for Tunbridge Wells (CfTW), highlighted the work being undertaken by 12 local organisations to meet the needs of those struggling with poverty.
The Poverty Trap
Empathy Action’s “Poverty Trap” simulation enabled some 100 people attending CfTW’s Missions Fayre an opportunity to glimpse something of the complex web of circumstances that entrap people in poverty. Although providing only a small taste of the hopes and fears of those who experience extreme poverty as a 24/7 reality, the interactive experience touched deep emotions in a number of those taking part.
Tunbridge Wells charities
We were delighted to meet the people behind a number of great local organisations and charities dedicated to tackling the material poverty and restoring relationships in society, both here in Tunbridge Wells, as well as further afield. These included Chapter 1, The Soup Bowl, WKDA, Housing Justice Night Shelters, West Kent YMCA, World In Need, Youth For Christ, Crisis Recovery, FairTrade and Fegans.
We were also greatly encouraged by the wonderful comments made by nearly 70 of the participants about their experience on the day. Here are just a few…
“Despite working for both local and international ministries to the poor and having a well developed sense of what poverty is I was really surprised by the impact of this experience. What a wonderful, well constructed, immersive experience to help people really connect with the plight of the poor.”
“Quite an afternoon! I came with notebook and pen but what I experienced I’ll not forget. Thank you for an amazing time.”
“Really made me think how easy it is to slip into poverty even in the UK and how difficult to get out.”
“The poverty trap simulation was a very thought provoking and quite intense experience. It was eye-opening to experience how people are bullied and mistreated as they struggle to survive.”
For more information or to book a simulation please get in touch with Empathy Action.