Learn about holistic, sustainable, empowering solutions to poverty.
When Helping Hurts
by Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert
I recommend this book to anyone interested in missions, ministry or non-profit work. It is truly a must read for anyone who works in these areas or who works with the poor, domestically or internationally.
"Churches and individual Christians typically have faulty assumptions about the causes of poverty, resulting in the use of strategies that do considerable harm to poor people and themselves. While When Helping Hurts 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. 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."
Brian Fikkert is a Professor at Covenant College and the founder and Executive Director of the Chalmers Center for Economic Development. Steve Corbett is an Assistant Professor at Covenant College and a Community Development Specialist for the Chalmers Center.
The Poor Will Be Glad
by Peter Greer
The Poor Will Be Glad is a book I read when I first learned about microfinance. It's co-written by Peter Greer, the president of HOPE International, a Christian non-profit focused on economic development that I interned with in the summer of 2012.
"Authors Peter Greer and Phil Smith draw on their personal experiences to provide proven solutions for effectively reducing poverty. The Poor Will Be Glad examines the pitfalls of traditional approaches and outlines a new model of economic development aimed at breaking the cycle of dependency. Through microfinance and employment-based solutions, people who share God’s heart for the poor can reorient their efforts from giving handouts to offering a hand up, helping others provide for their families and regain their dignity." -ThePoorWillBeGlad.Com
More Than Good Intentions
by Dean Karlan and Jacob Appel
More Than Good Intentions asserts that the development community should stop arguing about whether aid is beneficial or detrimental, and instead should thoroughly evaluate and test development programs to see if they are successful or not.
"American individuals and institutions spent billions of dollars to ease global poverty and accomplished almost nothing. Presenting innovative and successful development interventions around the globe, Karlan and Appel show how empirical analysis coupled with the latest thinking in behavioral economics can make a profound difference. More Than Good Intentions reveals how to invest those billions far more effectively and begin transforming the well-being of the world." -Amazon