Public service is a way of life for Americans; giving is a part of our national character. But compassionate instincts and generous spirits aren’t enough, says veteran urban activist Robert D. Lupton. In this groundbreaking guide, he reveals the disturbing truth about charity: all too much of it has become toxic, devastating to the very people it’s meant to help.
In his four decades of urban ministry, Lupton has experienced firsthand how our good intentions can have unintended, dire consequences. Our free food and clothing distribution encourages ever-growing handout lines, diminishing the dignity of the poor while increasing their dependency. We converge on inner-city neighborhoods to plant flowers and pick up trash, battering the pride of residents who have the capacity (and responsibility) to beautify their own environment. We fly off on mission trips to poverty-stricken villages, hearts full of pity and suitcases bulging with giveaways—trips that one Nicaraguan leader describes as effective only in “turning my people into beggars.”
In Toxic Charity, Lupton urges individuals, churches, and organizations to step away from these spontaneous, often destructive acts of compassion toward thoughtful paths to community development. He delivers proven strategies for moving from toxic charity to transformative charity.
Proposing a powerful “Oath for Compassionate Service” and spotlighting real-life examples of people serving not just with their hearts but with proven strategies and tested tactics, Lupton offers all the tools and inspiration we need to develop healthy, community-driven programs that produce deep, measurable, and lasting change. Everyone who volunteers or donates to charity needs to wrestle with this book.
This is a great book for thinking about how to give wisely in an effective way that makes a difference.
If you want to be a good steward of your resources, and give to those in need, this book will help you consider the best practices in charitable organizations.
Author Lupton asserts in his book that most of us have "good intentions" by our giving as generously as we do as Americans.
Important and valuable information. Certainly presents a challenge to all who are trying to help others but could be doing it in a way that would have a more lasting effect.Published 5 days ago by Sheran S. Long
The essential question is this: Is there a way we can bring more human dignity to the process of exchange rather than simply using one-way giving?Published 13 days ago by Sharon W. Putman
I dislike the term "must-reading." But if you donate to charities you should read this, or at least another book that covers similar ground, before you give, or you may one... Read morePublished 13 days ago by Sasha Alyson
Must read for anyone who is considering to be a contributor to a charity. If you have been giving for a while this will help you in your decision making concerning future... Read morePublished 13 days ago by John VanDerWalker
As someone who has been working in rural Guatemala over the past 4 years, this book was a really great read and a really great opportunity to make some changes in how I do things. Read morePublished 15 days ago by A. Simmer