According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2014 there were 46.7 million people - 14 percent of the U.S. population - living in poverty. While poverty in America is often considered fluid, as some people experience a temporary period of situational poverty when their income is decreased due to certain life changes, others remain in poverty for generations. Individuals living in generational poverty often experience perpetual hopelessness as each day is focused merely on surviving with a sense of urgency. This way of life and mindset stems from a unique series of ongoing challenges they face, which can include finding a place to live, having money for food, and underlying health issues that are not addressed due to a lack of finances and healthcare resources.
Donna M. Beegle, Ph.D., understands this type of poverty first-hand. The child of migrant workers, she traveled with her family from Arizona to Washington as they followed the fruit-picking season. She left school for marriage at age 15. At age 25 with two children, no husband, little education and no job skills, she continued to struggle with poverty. But her life finally took a pivotal turn during the following decade when she defied the odds and obtained her G.E.D., bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees. With the help of mentor Bob Fulford, Ph.D., she co-founded Communication Across Barriers, a consulting firm dedicated to broadening and improving opportunities for people who live in the war zone of poverty.
Join us for an enlightening conversation with Dr. Beegle, President of Communication Across Barriers, as she highlights the importance of gaining understanding and perspective when working with people living in poverty.