WKU Students See What it's like to be Homeless

An area of WKU's campus turned into what students called shantytown Wednesday night.

It was part of National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, and to give students an experience of what it's like to be hungry and homeless.

"It makes them think about people who are homeless when it's this cold outside, and they have nowhere to go," said Asst. Hall Director, Nikki Eversole.

Several students participated even despite chilly temperatures.

"The main thing is just being aware of the situation other people are in, everybody on a college campus usually has it pretty well, and it's just really good to take a look back at people that are a lot less fortunate than us," said sophomore, Jacob DeRossett.

WKU's department of housing and residence life hosted this 22nd annual Shantytown event.

Students built shanties and were judged on survival criteria.

"We're wanting them to think about people who don't have anywhere to stay at night. We want to challenge them to think about things they can do to change things in the bowling green community or to go home and change things in their community," said Eversole.

Tonight also featured speakers talking about homelessness, and students got the message that it can be anywhere.

"Even though this is a small area, it still happens here, just like it does in the rest of the world. It could be the smallest city, but people still live in poverty and don't have anything to eat, and sometimes nowhere to go," said junior, Elicia Tillis.

Students say this experience is good, but you also need to try and make a difference.

"If it's brought to your attention, then you can help someone, you can realize what's happening around you and make it better," said Tillis.

And that's exactly what these students hope to do.

The program also featured speakers from habitat for humanity and a showing of the film The Pursuit of Happyness.

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