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Here are a few activities/ ideas your youth group can use to prepare for HALO or maybe you want to use them throughout the year to help keep your group focused on the needs of others.

10 Great Ways To Focus On Poverty

Attitude: How We Think About Homeless Youth

Teaching Tolerance.org's Lesson Plans/Discussions:
Fighting Hunger

Hunger In The United States

Poetry For Home: Homelessness

The Poverty Project

30 Hour Famine

Souper Bowl Of Caring

Sound Off For Poverty

Here's a simple challenge:

Ask your youth to collect canned goods for one month. The number of cans has to equal the number of inches tall each youth is. (ex. 5' tall = 60" so 60 cans)

At the end of the month, have each person arrange his cans for a photo. Then have the entire group photo with all the cans.

Scavenger Hunt:
Make a list for your hunt several weeks prior and distribute it through your congregation.

(list only non-perishables or cleaning supplies)

On the day of the Hunt, have enough volunteer drivers on hand (ADULTS) to divide the group into smaller groups of three or four.

(Your Adults will already have a designated area for the hunt. You can divvy up neighborhoods, streets, etc.)

Groups are the chauffeured to participating neighborhoods to see how many of the items on the list they can collect.

(Set a time limit so that every group arrives back at the same time)

Collected food should be delivered as soon as possible to the local Food Bank.  Celebrate with your group on their successes!

Sample List
5 cans green beans
7 boxes pasta
3 jars peanut butter
1 roll paper towels
2 jars grape jelly
12 cans of tuna
1 tube toothpaste
5 disposable razors
3 cans of fruit

you get the idea!

These materials from the Poverty USA website, will help you get a better perspective on poverty.

The federal government says that a family of four making $18,810 a year is living in poverty.

What exactly does that mean?

A family of four will spend an average of $5,274 a year for even the most basic of shelter.

- 5,274

Want to keep your family warm? The average expense for utilities is $2,350 a year.
- 2,350

If you plan on driving to work, getting your children to school or going to the grocery store, you'll need to spend at least $4,852 to maintain a car and keep it full of gas.
- 4,852

Even if you get food stamps, the average a family of four needs at least $4,815 a year for food.
- 4,815

Health Care
Even if an employer contributed part of the costs of health care (which is unlikely for working-class people), the average for a family of four will be $793 a year. A large medical problem likely would devastate the family.
- 793

Child Care
Even with child care subsidies, working-class families can spend an average of $2,030 a year on child care for two of their children. In a large metropolitan area, the cost could exceed $13,000 a year.
- 2,030

Now your family is in the red and you still haven't considered the expenses you'll need for toiletries, school supplies, shoes, clothing, holiday and birthday gifts, education, life insurance, furnishings for your house, recreation and vacations, cleaning supplies or any kind of entertainment.

What will you do?

Source: Poverty USA