Slum Survivor is a simulation experience designed to help young people connect with the lives of some of the world’s poorest.
By spending a few days the way a billion spend a lifetime, living in a temporary shelter, eating a limited diet and facing tough challenges and choices it’s possible to both raise funds and awareness of the poverty and people that live in the world’s slums.
You’ll first build your own “Slum” – an informal settlement made out of waste materials; anything you can find will become your home for the weekend. The aim is to help us understand a tiny portion of what the instability of life is like for those living in the world’s slums. This obviously cannot replicate that entirely but it helps us to understand, in a small way, something of life for the worlds poor.
You will eat a diet limited by amount and choice: you won’t get to choose what you want for any of your meals, neither will you be able to eat the quantity that is usual – in fact, you’ll eat only two meals per day, with snacks given as treats. You may be able to buy more food, if you earn enough to be able to do so.
You’ll also take on a variety of challenges – you can download of all of the challenges here - but generally the idea is that the challenges put in front of us some of the real life experiences of people who live informally.
It won’t, however, be exactly like life in a slum. The insecurity, the danger, the sickness and disease – many of these things we simply cannot replicate. But Slum Survivor will give you an inkling as to what life is like for a billion around the world, in the hope that you want to then go on and spend your life fighting to help alleviate extreme poverty around the world.
Finally, Slum Survivor will help you understand something of how God feels about the people that he loves who live in poverty. There are six sessions to go alongside Slum Survivor which look at what the Bible has to say about poverty and what our response, as followers of Jesus, should be. Check out the Youth Group Resource for more.
Participants in Slum Survivor will get sponsored to take part in the challenge and the money raised will go to the work of Soul Action partner projects working in poor communities throughout the world.
In addition, there will also be the opportunity to spend time in prayer, reading God’s word and connecting with God’s heart for justice. The idea is that through Slum Survivor we will be changed and so help to change the lives of others too.