With more than 225,000 copies sold, When Helping Hurts is a paradigm-forming contemporary classic on the subject of poverty alleviation and ministry to those in need. Emphasizing the poverty of both heart and society, this book exposes the need that every person has and how it can be filled. The reader is brought to understand that poverty is much more than simply a lack of financial or material resources and that it takes much more than donations and handouts to solve the problem of poverty.
While this book exposes past and current development efforts that churches have engaged in which unintentionally undermine the people they're trying to help, its central point is to provide proven strategies that challenge Christians to help the poor empower themselves. Focusing on both North American and Majority World contexts, When Helping Hurts catalyzes the idea that sustainable change for people living in poverty comes not from the outside-in, but from the inside-out.
Table of Contents:
Part 1: Foundational Concepts for Helping Without Hurting
1. Why Did Jesus Come to Earth?
2. What's the Problem?
3. Are We There Yet?
Part 2: General Principles for Helping Without Hurting
4. Not All Poverty Is Created Equal
5. Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor, and Their Assets
6. McDevelopment: Over 2.5 Billion People not Served
Part 3: Practical Strategies for Helping Without Hurting
7. Doing Short-Term Missions Without Doing Long-Term Harm
8. Yes, in Your Backyard
9. And to the Ends of the Earth
Part 4: Getting Started on Helping Without Hurting
10. Excuse Me, Can You Spare Some Change?
11. On Your Mark, Get Set, Go!
STEVE CORBETT is the Community Development Specialist for the Chalmers Center at Covenant College and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Economics and Community Development at Covenant College.
DR. BRIAN FIKKERT is the Founder and Executive Director of the Chalmers Center at Covenant College, as well as a Professor of Economics and Community Development at Covenant College.
"I can honestly report that When Helping Hurts is the single best book I've seen on this topic. Although this book will make many readers uncomfortable, it quickly offers hope in the form of understandable, feasible new strategies that better grasp the dignity and promise of the materially poor. It deserves a #1 spot on the reading list of every Christian who wants to follow Jesus in a genuine, mutually transforming love of neighbor." - Amy L. Sherman, PhD, senior fellow and director, Sagamore Institute Center on Faith in Communities, author, Restorers of Hope
"What an opportunity evangelicals have to make a difference in our world through the church. Corbett and Fikkert build on the growing momentum of holistic witness that's sweeping our country and globe and are eminently qualified and positioned to take motivated kingdom citizens on a Christ-centered and comprehensive journey that will pay huge dividends for impoverished people and for Christians in our broken world." - Dr. Ronald J. Sider, president, Evangelicals for Social Action, author, Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger
"How can a local church make a difference, and how do individual Christians meaningfully reflect Christ's grace, when the disparities of wealth and power in our world are so great? When Helping Hurts explores biblical principles in terms of real-life situations to offer real help and grace-filled answers for such questions." - Bryan Chappell, president, Covenant Theological Seminary
"When Helping Hurts wonderfully combines heavy-duty thinking with practical tools. I appreciate their zeal to root all strategies in the institution God has ordained to bring about His goals. No donor should invest another dollar in any kind of relief effort before digesting the last page of this important book." - Joel Belz, founder and writer, World Magazine
"Churches in North America will find this a helpful way to educate congregations and then motivate them to action, both globally and in their neighborhoods." - Bryant Myers, PhD, professor of International Development, School of Intercultural Studies, Fuller Theological Seminary
"A clarion call to rethink how we apply the gospel to a broken world. This book will transform our good intentions into genuine, lasting change." - Stephen J. Baumann, senior vice president, World Relief