Explore the challenges and subsequent risk factors that influence and direct population health for low-income individuals and families with children.

N421 Population Health – Poverty Simulation

N421 Population Health Nursing

Low Income Simulation


1. Critically analyze the impact of environment and lifestyle on the health of populations

2. Explore the challenges and subsequent risk factors that influence and direct population health for low-income individuals and families with children.


SNAP guidelines located at https://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=30357

SNAP budget calculator located at http://fscalc.dhs.illinois.gov/FSCalc/

Healthy Meal planning websites myplate.gov; www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/www.cdc.gov/nutrition/everyone/resources/index.html; USDA.gov

Harkness & DeMarco textbook Chapter 13 and Chapter 18

The student will not be riding a bus for this Simulation, but instead, choose to go online to one of the following local grocery stores (to shop online to find prices for your menu items).

1. Kroger

2. Hyvee

3. Walmart

4. Schnucks

Bus Information:

**Since you will NOT be riding the bus for this assignment, please tell me WHICH grocery store you chose example Walmart (providing the address as well) and research bus routes in that area state the exact bust routes within the Peoria IL area**

The idea is for you to see how complicated it would be for a person to navigate public transportation every single time they need groceries.



Transit Center, 407 SW Adams St, Peoria, IL 61602


Adult (single ride) $1.00 each way or $3.00 all day pass

Student (single ride) 0.50 each way must show school ID

Choose a round-trip route and schedule that will allow for your stop at a grocery store


1. Go to the Illinois DHS SNAP Calculator State of Illinois website: http://fscalc.dhs.illinois.gov/FSCalc/

a. Complete the Household Information (fill in the blanks on the website) with the following family information:

i. Household Size: __6__

ii. Is anyone in the household 60 or older, blind, or disabled? No

iii. Household Income and Assets

iv. Gross Income (before deductions) from work (monthly): 2800

v. Other income (monthly): 0

vi. Assets: 200

vii. Household Expenses

viii. Dependent Care Costs (monthly): 400

ix. Court-ordered child support payment amount (monthly): 0

x. Out-of-pocket medical expenses for a household member age 60 or older: 0

xi. Rent/Mortgage (monthly): 1200

xii. Homeowners insurance and taxes (monthly): 0

xiii. Household Utility Expenses

xiv. Choose one that best describes your utility expense:

xv. -From the drop down choose “Billed for AC/Heat”

b. Press Calculate now and on the next screen in the right hand column you will see your monthly food stamp benefits (divide this monthly amount by 4 for your weekly budget amount for food)

c. Record your information on the provided chart

2. Plan one week’s worth of healthy meals and snacks for your family.

a. No one skips a meal

b. Provide 3 meals and 2 snacks per person (Keep in mind number of servings and realistic serving sizes)

c. Choose items your family will actually eat.

d. Enter data into the provided chart

3. Go to the grocery that is on the route (street) that you have been assigned to, using your own transportation and simulate purchasing the food for these meals and snacks

a. You MUST stay within the weekly budget and provide for 6 people!

b. Provide a “receipt”- copy down everything that you are buying and indicate the amount spent or the cost for the items that you are buying ( simulating to buy) for your purchases showing your total cost (taxes excluded)

4. Write a couple short paragraphs answering the following questions:

***Things to consider: climate, transporting items, distance, shopping with children, budget constraints, nutritional content of purchases***

a. What are your initial reactions to this activity and how will it help you provide better patient care?

b. If you had to use public transportation, what were the actual and potential challenges of using public transportation?

i. Provide all the bus/public transportation information that you acquired in this paragraph

c. What were the actual and potential challenges of planning and shopping for nutritious meals on a SNAP budget?

d. What impact has Covid 19 affected grocery shopping and supplying food for a family of 6?

5. Turn in your:

a. Menu plan

b. Grocery receipt- list of items that you would purchase and total price for items- this is the “receipt”.

c. Your paragraph answers from above (it is ok to write directly on this sheet if that is easier)

d. Turn in your CET. You can just write the reflection this week-I want to hear your thoughts about this poverty simulation. Please score your objectives, but you do NOT need to write to any this week.



Total Family Members ______6__________

Weekly Budget $_________________________ Receipt Total $_________________________

Grocery ItemAmount PurchasedCost
Total Expenditure
Amount Allotment
Net Overage/ Savings
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