Students in Cotter’s popular Cross Cultural Ministry Project (CCMP) club recently took their first ever trip to the Twin Cities to volunteer. Traditionally the club takes week-long trips that are out of state during the summer. Students helped put together 15,419 meals at the Second Harvest Heartland, helped clean and organize a women’s shelter, and helped sort and tag donations at the Arc of New Hope thrift store.
On Saturday evening, the group returned to their home base for more programming and education. A facilitator led Cotter students in a poverty simulation where they were broken into groups and assumed the role of a family of 5 living in Minneapolis. Remembering statistics learned the prior evening, students knew that a family of 4, with 2 working parents, would each need to make $14.03 per hour in order to afford basic needs. In this realistic simulation, both the dad and the mom worked full time and made $12 and $10 per hour, respectively. With $3,200 for the month to make ends meet while paying for transportation, housing, health care, food, education, entertainment, clothing, etc., most groups were very much in debt by the end of the simulation.
This weekend trip was so popular, it will be sure to be repeated. Cotter wishes to thank Mrs. Marisa Corcoran for making this trip a reality for our CCMP club. CCMP Participants for the urban plunge trip were Kate Duellman, Ryoka Hoemo, Krystijan Vander-Zanden, Kohei Toyota, Ayaka Henzan, Rosemary Flanagan, Sung-Woo Jang, Molly Corcoran-Sanders, Maryia Swanson, Tri Nguyen, Roger Brosnahan, Alex Schell, and Logan Hein. Chaperones were Marisa Corcoran, Sandra Hohnstadt, and Walt Carpenter.