Reflection from NUS Advocacy Group, Actvocado


We went for a poverty simulation at Etch Empathy last week and it was incredibly thought-provoking! At the simulation, we were told make paper bags and sell them to make money to pay the “landlord” so that we don’t become homeless. Along the way, there were interventions by NGOs, loansharks and the game forced us to make some tough decisions about the need for education, sex work and more.

Poverty Escape Simulation Group Photo
While acknowledging that poverty is a spectrum, it helped us to experience the unfair circumstances that perpetuates the vicious poverty cycle and decision-making processes of some poor. This exercise was really well conducted and we managed to learn more about poverty without dehumanizing the poor. In accordance with the company’s name, empathy was further etched into our hearts. (Cheesy, we know)

Poverty Escape Simulation 1

Poverty Escape Simulation Sharing 1

Poverty Escape Simulation 2
Following the simulation, we had a sharing session and important questions were raised.
1. Does building a school help people get out of poverty?
2. Are OCIPS more focused on the service or learning? Which will be better?

Poverty Escape Simulation Sharing 2
At Actvocado, we see OCIP as a learning experience, and being educated about the context of where poverty operates is the first step! In the meantime, to all our friends going for exams, all the best!


Etch Empathy will be supporting Actvocado in their initiatives. Meanwhile, check out the Actvocado Facebook Page.