1) Divide your larger group into three uneven subgroups, explaining to all of them what each group represents-
a) High Income Countries (about 17% of group) – represents countries such as USA, Canada, Japan & England where most people have good doctors, safe water and more to eat than they need.
b) Middle Income Countries (about 25% of group) – represents countries such as Poland, Thailand and the Philippines where many people don’t get enough to eat and five times more children die in this group than the first group.
c) Low Income Countries (about 58% of group)- represents countries such as Haiti, Bangladesh and Ethiopia where people earn less than $2 a day, and most people go hungry every day. The drinking water often makes people sick.
2) Hand out pieces of candy (or pennies) as follows- High Income = 50 pieces per person; Middle Income = 7 pieces per person; Low Income = One piece per three people. Explain that each person can keep anything you give them during this exercise, but they are not to eat anything during the exercise. Don’t mention anything about sharing, but during the discussion, often the “rich” group will share with both other groups voluntarily.
3) Discuss these questions— How does it feel to be part of each group? Was the distribution fair? What would make it fair? What are some other things you might not have if you lived in the poorest group? What are some of the causes of hunger?
4) Read Deuteronomy 15:7-11 (See also Patriarchs and Prophets, Chapter 51 “God’s Care for the Poor”). What can we do to make a difference in an unfair world?
–Adapted from Karen Leslie, when she was Primary Sabbath School Teacher, New Haven Seventh-day Adventist Church, Overland Park, Kansas and www.ADRA.org