A (Re)orientation to Chalmers Resources

Welcome to Chalmers

In the midst of the deepening social and economic crisis caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic, we’re humbled to be a small part of helping churches around the world wrestle through how best to love our neighbors who are most affected.

If you’re just connecting with the Chalmers Center for the first time, welcome! You’re joining a community of people who want to help the poor in biblical, effective ways—with over 20 years of research and experience that goes into every tool we provide. We’re here to help you and your church or ministry think differently about poverty and then do something about it.

Perhaps you’ve been part of this community for a long time already, but haven’t re-engaged in a while. We’ve created a lot of new books and training resources recently, so there may be new ways to connect with us and put principles into practice in your ministry that you haven’t seen yet.

Whether you’re new to Chalmers or not, sometimes it can be helpful to know where to start when you’re looking for tools for your ministry. Let us take a moment to walk you through our resources, just like we would if you were to call us or visit the office.

If you’re interested in understanding the causes of poverty and how you can help the materially poor…

…you’ve come to the right place! Most people find out about the Chalmers Center first through the best-selling book When Helping Hurts: How to Alleviate Poverty without Hurting the Poor…and Yourself.

To get started with the basics, we’d recommend that you check out:

  • This page on our approach, which will orient you to how we think about poverty.
  • Our blog, which is updated weekly. This is a great place to get introduced to some of our key principles, ideas for how to apply them, and stories of transformation from around the world (and get on our e-mail list, if you’re not already!).
  • The online study Helping without Hurting: the Basics, where you can (by yourself or with a group) explore our principles and practices with activities and reflection questions and discover how to walk with the materially poor in humble relationships instead of providing temporary handouts.
  • Becoming Whole: Why the Opposite of Poverty Isn’t the American Dream. When we try to help the poor, we often invite them into the same broken story that’s left us anxious, alone, and dissatisfied. Through this book, you’ll discover a better story—God’s story of change!
  • Are You a Good Neighbor? This online training will help you apply the principles of helping without hurting in everyday life—and take the first steps toward building personal relationships with people in poverty.

If you’re already working alongside people in material poverty, and want to be more effective…

…we’re ready to help you go deeper into the good work you’re doing!

If this sounds like you, you might want to check out:

  • The book or online study Practicing the King’s Economy: Honoring Jesus in How We Work, Earn, Spend, Save, and Give. You’ll discover new ways to live out the kingdom of God and impact your community in your everyday habits at home, work, and church.
  • The book or online training Helping without Hurting in Church Benevolence. You’ll discover practical ways to apply the principles of When Helping Hurts when someone asks your church for financial help.
  • A Field Guide to Becoming Whole: Principles for Poverty Alleviation Ministries, which unpacks the ideas of Becoming Whole to show you a simple framework of ministry design principles for lasting change—for yourself, and the people you seek to help.

If you’re interested in starting a new ministry to serve the materially poor through your church or organization…

…and you’re working in the U.S. you might want to check out:

  • Faith & Finances. Get trained to start a financial education ministry tailored to the unique challenges faced by low-income people in the United States.
  • Work Life. Get trained to start a jobs-preparedness ministry that helps people in poverty overcome obstacles to finding—and keeping—work.
  • Mobilize My Church, an online training providing tools to help you guide a handful of passionate leaders through a process to energize your entire church for effective poverty alleviation ministry.

…and you’re working in the Majority World, start here:

Our team is here to help, too. If you have questions about any of these resources or other aspects of our ministry, don’t hesitate to reach out. We love hearing from you!

All the work we do is made possible through the generous support of our financial partners, and we need support from partners like you to keep creating tools and sharing them with others. Will you join us by making a gift today?

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