Audrey, Ayleen and Isabelle report from the study week in Dayton, Ohio.

Today’s presentation was on poverty and homelessness. Poverty looks the same in both countries in terms of who it affects. In Switzerland, people receive assistance with rent, food, and inclusion back into society. In the U.S., people can receive assistance with housing and food, but it takes longer to receive those benefits if they are accepted.

Homelessness looks different in each country. In the U.S., homelessness is more of a problem. The U.S. has a variety of agencies geared towards helping the homeless population, but there is a lot of stigma surrounding being homeless. There is the «deserving» poor who are veterans or elderly widows, and then there is the «undeserving» poor who some believe are too «lazy» and are abusing the system. Since agencies in the U.S. rely on donations instead of government grants that may or may not be taken away at any given time, social workers and other professionals or citizens must advocate for the homeless and impoverished Americans throughout the country.

Studierende laufen in ein rosarotes Haus, welches ein Tagesheim für Obdachlose ist. Auf der rechten Seite des Hauses ist eine Hauptstrasse.

The afternoon began with a visit in the Daybreak Homeless Shelter. Sean, one of the social workers in the Shelter, told us about how the Daybreak funded and what programs are they for. They have an apartment style homeless shelter where each client gets their own room. One of the programs is family counseling with short-term shelter for younger kids, aged 10-12 years. The second program is more long-term housing for older teens up to 25 years. The teens can reside at the main shelter at Daybreak, or can receive assistance in getting an apartment outside of Daybreak. The third program is called employment, where they can receive job training, resume building, and assistance filling put applications.

Studierende stehen in einem Garten vor einem Haus und betrachten die Pflanzen.

After that we went to the Nova Substance Abuse Treatment. It’s an agency for people with drug addictions. They have a detox center and some rooms where they can stay for 20 days. In Switzerland, there’s nothing like this. The most similar thing would probably be a psychiatry. It was really interesting and impressive.