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Poverty 101 Workshop Reaches Social Service Providers

Room of people listening to a speaker at the front of the roomKelly Roy knows firsthand what it is like to live in poverty and wants to share what she knows with social service providers and others who help people in poverty. That is why Roy, and other members of a group called Progress Village, organized an event in Traverse City called Introduction to Poverty 101, focusing on the facts, myths and realities of living in poverty.

"We want there to be a good, special bond between our neighbors in poverty and the agencies that we're working with," said Roy.

Progress Village is made up of people who've struggled with poverty and are now working together with the Traverse Bay Poverty Reduction Initiative to share their stories and provide community outreach. The Introduction to Poverty event featured nationally known poverty expert Dr. Donna Beegle, who says it's important to have authentic voices provide the community with a better understanding of poverty.

"We've been there, we've lived there, we may still be in poverty," said Dana Tuller, a Progress Village member. "At this point we just want to me help myself."

"It's bringing them a real life situation," said La Fekken, a Progress Village member. "It personalizes struggle."

"If you want solutions...go to the people who are living in that war zone of poverty," said Beegle. "This is a critical point for bringing the voices of people in poverty in to the conversation...and create opportunities for people to move out and stay out of poverty."

Related Info: Poverty Reduction Initiatives
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