Urbana 15 Poverty Track: Putting young Minds on Meaningful Missions

As wealth in-equality is a growing issue in the U.S. and around the globe, it is important for young minds to be made aware of its impact on the world today.  I recently interviewed one of our users to get some background on the impact TimeTap can make to help raise this awareness.  Katye started her journey when she went to Mexico City with the Global Urban Trek and since has gone back on the Trek twice more.  Katye’s experiences in Mexico City led her to intern with Servant Partners, and now she works for InterVarsity as the National Coordinator of Urban Programs (a non-profit organization).   

 

To pull a quote from Stephen Colbert that I found on Katye’s very heart-wrenching blog My Long Goodbye, which is about the mourning and hope that she experienced during (and after) her mother’s battles with stroke and terminal brain cancer,

 

Stephen Colbert 

Stephen Colbert 

 

If this is going to be a Christian nation that doesn’t help the poor, either we have to pretend that Jesus was just as selfish as we are, or we’ve got to acknowledge that he commanded us to love the poor and serve the needy without condition and then admit that we just don’t want to do it. –Stephen Colbert

 

 

 

I couldn’t have said it better myself!  This is what Urbana Poverty Track is all about; showing young people of faith that one of the most important responsibilities of a Christian nation is undoubtedly to help those in need.  To put this in Katye’s words “The Poverty Track brings together the well-resourced and the under-resourced into a learning community to join in God’s work of alleviating global poverty.”

 

Katye Crawford, National Coordinator of Urban Programs

Katye Crawford, National Coordinator of Urban Programs

Some Background on Katye

 

Katye has been working for Intervarsity Christian Fellowships for 5 years now in Oakland CA.  Katye’s organization provides internships for college students to focus on alleviating poverty and social injustice around the world.  “College students have a lot of privilege, so getting them thinking about these issues is important,” she says.  Katye also stated that she loves being able to take students out of their comfort zones and get them thinking about issues such as poverty and racism. 

 

How did Katye become so passionate about stopping social injustice you might ask?  It all started with her upbringing.  When asked about her passion for helping the poor I was informed that her father was a pastor and that she grew up going to a church that contributed heavily to its community.  “We had a job training program for unemployed men and women, we ran an affordable housing apartment complex, we invited the homeless men and women on our doorstep in to our services, and so many other things,” she says.  When asked about the best ways to alleviate poverty she claimed that listening and addressing the underlying systems of injustice were key practices.

 

There is much to be learned from Katye’s experiences.  One of the greatest social injustices surrounding poverty is the loss of identity.  Often when someone is begging on the streets or homeless, they are no longer treated as a person, most just ignore them.  Sometimes the biggest difference one can make in a strangers life isn’t monetary, it is just making them feel heard and treating them with the respect they deserve as a human being.

 

So where does TimeTap come in?

 

Urbana happens every 3 years and as a growing conference it has become more difficult through the years to schedule all the different classes and student-mentor sign ups that occur at the beginning.  Urbana has many different “tracks,” poverty track is just one of them.  There are some activities that every track participates in and then each track has its own set of Mentors that students will sign up for.  Each Mentor program has different activities involved.  This year Urbana brought over 16,000 participants together, 1,200 of which were with Katye’s “Poverty Track.”

 

Katye used TimeTap for the poverty track mentor sign ups so that students would no longer have to wait in long lines to speak with the mentors before knowing who to sign up with, “it was nice to have their bios there so people knew who to select,” she says.  It was also critical for this sign up system to have software that was mobile friendly so that the students could sign up directly from their phones.  “It worked out really well actually, it was great!” says Katye. 

 

Katye started her search for a scheduler on google and needed a scheduler that was cheap and would cater to her conference's specific needs.  We pride ourselves in customer service so we were happy to be able to help Katye with such a noble cause.  To find out more about Urbana or Katye’s organization click the links below.  If you are interested in what Katye had to say about us, read the review here.

 

https://urbana.org/poverty-track

http://up.intervarsity.org/