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Pomona students use high-tech approach to help low-income people.

Fasting during his sophomore year, Michael Gechter ’05 was feeling disillusioned about his ability to make a difference as a college student. The fast called for peace in Iraq, but Gechter felt frustrated. While the action had some symbolic importance, it was doing very little to effect change.

Gechter expressed his frustration to neighbor David Henderson ’05. “So we moved the conversation inside my room, and it was right then and there that we decided, ‘let’s do something,’” says Henderson, pictured at left.

From that decision, Pomona Valley Low-Income Services was born, a group that has worked to increase the incomes of more than 200 people in the greater Pomona Valley—averaging an additional $400 per month per client. With their “PVLIS: Case Manager” software, volunteers steer clients toward significant resources that are available yet unknown to many who are unemployed, homeless or struggling to make it.