The Challenges of a Poverty Challenge

My colleague and I plan to host a “Poverty Challenge” for our students. My students, from the Community and Health Services Navigation (CHSN) program will play the role of service providers. My colleague’s students, from the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program (BScN), will play the role of clients. We will be drawing from the original Poverty Challenge Toolkit as well as resources from Public Health Sudbury’s modified Poverty Challenge which they graciously provided us access to. 

The learning objectives vary based on each program. For the CHSN students, the objectives are as follows:

  1. Explore different resources within different systems, identify barriers, and develop subsequent advocacy strategies as navigators.
  2. Examine how disparities and inequities facing those living in poverty are shaped by the social determinants of health.

For the BScN students, the objectives are as follows:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge and strategies for prevention, health protection, and health promotion working with those experiencing poverty
  2. Based on the experience, identify a health need of those who are living in poverty in Sudbury
  3. Examine how disparities and inequities facing those living in poverty are shaped by the social determinants of health.

Initially, planned to embark on a research study to examine whether empathy was impacted as a result of participating in the challenge as well as to explore whether student’s perceived confidence of knowledge of community resources was. Due to the rigorous preparation required for research, I consulted with the Innovation Champion team, the Chair of the Hub and a rep from the Planning and Research Team to express my concerns. I wasn’t sure that I’d be able to have all necessary documentation submitted for ethics approval, especially with this being our first time facilitating this challenge, coupled with the knowledge that Public Health spent a year of planning before orchestrating their own version of the challenge.

I anticipated there would be trial and error and many revisions along the way. This would mean having to resubmit documents to ethics for approval and may have proven  cumbersome. It was suggested we consider the first phase as a pilot, and then reconsider an official research trial in the future after catching our bearings.

I must admit this resulted in an incredible weight off my shoulders. I felt that I could now focus my energy on making the experience as impactful as possible for the students. My colleague agreed.

One thought on “The Challenges of a Poverty Challenge

  1. This sounds like an amazing interdisciplinary opportunity for both your students and the BScN students! I can’t wait to read your post about how things went 😉

    Like

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