Answer: Get in touch with Finchale’s Events Planner, that’s what!

This is exactly what Tina of the National Citizen Service did when she was posed with this problem. Wendy Wilkinson, Finchale's Events Planner, immediately made enquiries among the team at Finchale to see if anyone was available to stand in as an emergency speaker. Thankfully one of the veteran's team was available who, with less than an hour to prepare, was willing and able to deliver the presentation. Mark takes up the story...

"It was a quite a challenge to develop a logical presentation in the short time scale. It had to be relevant to the audience of young adults and demonstrate how poverty, as an aspect of citizenship, can impact on people in their local area.

Via lively question and answer discussions, the presentation considered what the word poverty meant, the different types of poverty, discussed the 9 aspects identified as being essentials for living out of poverty and some of the choices veterans in poverty have to face. One such choice was: if you had no food to feed yourself and little income, would you feed your family pet before yourself? Interestingly many of the young people said they would; incidentally, when the group were told that this was a real choice and the veteran bought food for and fed his dog before himself, the question also got the biggest, sympathetic, Ahhh! For me an unexpected outcome was that many of the young adults said that they would like to experience poverty so that they would know what life was like on both sides of the coin so to speak,"

That said, my hope is that they never have to experience it but in case they do the positive steps Finchale's Team take to support, not just veterans, in poverty out of it were also highlighted, for example, the availability of foodbank support, re-housing the homeless, referring to debt relief charities, helping individuals get access to the benefits they are entitled to, to name a few."

The end result was that these young people, the citizens of the future, gained a well-rounded awareness of some of the issues surrounding poverty in their community and the practical ways the Finchale Team can help and support.

There was not enough time to prepare feedback sheets for the presentation but anecdotal feedback from the group to the Finchale Team and to Tina from National Citizens Service together with a request from Tina for a similar presentation to be delivered to another group of young adults in the future was confirmation enough that the group had enjoyed the discussions and Finchale had saved the day!