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Poverty Seminars


When a community has a shared understanding of poverty and a common language all community members are able to cross economic class lines to solve problems and work together to increase prosperity for everyone. The seminar provides this foundation.

The seminar is based on the work of Dr. Ruby Payne’s Bridges Out of Poverty. Through video presentations and guided conversations, seminar participants learn new ways of viewing poverty and those persons living in poverty. The seminar touches on the causes of poverty beyond income, the tyranny of living in poverty and why it is so difficult for those in poverty to change. At the same time, it points to solutions. It is a three hour program and is open to the public free of charge.

Poverty Seminars are scheduled quarterly.  The next one will be:

Wednesday, February 12, 2020
St. Vincent de Paul
818 W. Sunset Drive, Waukesha, WI 53189
5:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Light dinner provided
If you are interested in attending a scheduled seminar, or your organization would like to host a seminar for a specific group, Getting Ahead will work with you to make it happen.

Please contact the Getting Ahead Team at 262-547-0654 or email.

Taking a New Look at Poverty Seminar FAQ

How did the seminar get started in Waukesha?

For years St. Vincent de Paul has helped people in need in Waukesha County. Some of the
St. Vincent de Paul volunteers that make those visits to the poor thought: wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could help these people out of poverty rather than just giving them a handout?

That was the genesis of this new program called Coming Together to Get Ahead. The program combines education and mentoring to help people who want to change. There are many roles to be played to make this happen.

Community Training will give you an insight into the struggle of poverty that you have never experienced. Using this new prospective, you will see that people in poverty need more than financial help. Once you understand the new definition of poverty, you may find that there is a way you can help.

By opening yourself to a new idea, you could develop your compassion and empathy for the poor. Participation in this training will equip you to understand what you can do and support you in your decision to do it. It will show you that there is something you can do: Help one person to a better life.

What does the seminar cover?

The definition of poverty revealing that poverty is more than an economic issue; that poverty is the extent to which a person and/or community is without resources.

Practical ways that ALL citizens can get involved and make a difference, one person, one neighborhood and one community at a time in Waukesha County.

The Taking a New Look at Poverty seminar explores Dr. Ruby Payne’s Bridges Out of Poverty.

Ruby K. Payne, Ph.D. is the founder of aha! Process and an author, speaker, publisher, and career educator. Recognized internationally for A Framework for Understanding Poverty, her foundational book and workshop, Dr. Ruby Payne has helped students and adults of all economic backgrounds achieve academic, professional, and personal success.

Payne founded aha! Process in 1996 to offer a broad range of training solutions–workshops, consulting, books, and trainings for K–12, higher education, and communities—with a focus on creating sustainable success for everyone.

In 2000 she coauthored Bridges Out of Poverty with Philip E. DeVol and Terie Dreussi-Smith as the organization branched out into working toward healthy, sustainable communities. The program is used nationally.

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