Purdue Extension helping people rise above poverty

February 25, 2014  


WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The latest installment of an online series on challenges and opportunities facing rural Indiana highlights Purdue Extension community programs that are helping to lift people out of poverty.

The article, posted Tuesday (Feb. 25) on the website of Agricultures magazine, is the sixth of the seven-part "Giving New Life to Rural Indiana" series by the Purdue University Department of Agricultural Communication.

The article includes the experiences of a woman from Huntington, Ind., who attended a Purdue Extension class, called Getting Ahead, that helped her to regain her sense of self-worth and find the resources she needed to successfully complete her nursing assistant certification. She now works in home health care and is financially stable.

The woman also is co-leading classes with Karen Hinshaw, Purdue Extension health and human sciences educator in Huntington County.

Hinshaw, a native of Huntington, saw the needs of her county increase as factories and companies moved away, leaving the community of 38,000 about 20 miles southwest of Fort Wayne strapped for jobs.

Nearly 1 million people in Indiana are living in poverty, earning an annual income of less than $11,000 for an individual, $15,510 for a family of two and $19,530 for a family of three.

Hinshaw notes that local Purdue Extension offices have resources that people need to become financially stable.

"To watch people come in feeling worthless and be able to encourage and empower them to figure out who they are, what they want, and how to get there - there's nothing more rewarding than that," Hinshaw says. 

The article is available at https://ag.purdue.edu/agricultures/Pages/Spring2014/Features/RuralIndiana-06.aspx. The series ends next Tuesday. 

Writer: Keith Robinson, 765-494-2722, robins89@purdue.edu 

Source: Karen Hinshaw, 260-358-4826, kdhinsha@purdue.edu

Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722;
Keith Robinson, robins89@purdue.edu
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