partner organizations

Administer Justice; (847) 844-1100

Offers free legal counsel and representation for low-income individuals. Fights

human trafficking in Illinois. Other services include tax counsel, conflict

resolution, and fraud prevention help. Administer Justice focuses on informing

and empowering their clients. For more info, contact Janelle Elliott of

Westminster; or Carissa Jimenez, Volunteer Coordinator: 847-844- 1100, x227

Riverworks Life Skills Outreach (Youth) and Riverwoods Family Campus; (630) 584-2222

The Elgin program aids local churches in building relationships with under-

resourced families, mentoring, discipleship, and teaching life skills. For more in

formation, contact Sharon Kim of Westminster or Roger Simmons, the Elgin co


The Elgin Wayside Center center/; 847-695- 4405

A day facility and support program for the homeless offering food, counseling,

clothing, laundry, and Bible Studies, affiliated with Wayside Cross Ministries. For more

information, contact Mary Lou Campus of Westminster or David Fassett, Wayside Center

Coordinator at 847-695- 4405

We also keep a longer list of volunteer opportunities in Elgin, available here.

Guidelines for Charitable Outreach

Harm results when the causes of poverty are misdiagnosed and the

wrong kind of aid is given.

There are three types of help: Relief, Rehabilitation, and Development.

“Relief” supplies immediate aid to those who cannot fulfill their own needs,

such as victims of earthquake or a bombing. Relief is meant for emergencies.

“Rehabilitation” focuses on restoring people’s ability to care for themselves.

“Development” works on building the long-term capacity to live well in

relation to God and the world. Harm results when the wrong type of aid is

given, like giving people free food when what they really need is life-skills


Relief-type work (such as giving out food or supplies) is easier for

churches to accomplish but is most prone to negative effects when

extended beyond a true relief situation.

Examples of negative effects include creating dependence in the poor,

lowering self-esteem among the poor, or inflating a prideful “God-complex”

in the givers.

Building relationships in the community long-term brings about the

most substantive and positive change.

For several years, it may look like nothing is being accomplished, but in the

long run, it enables the best results toward Development. The most effective

ministries deeply involve the poor in the planning and implementation of the

ministry meant to help them.

These insights come from Brian Fikkert and Steve Corbett’s When Helping Hurts:

How to Alleviate Poverty Without Hurting the Poor or Ourselves and guide the

Mercy Team at Westminster.

For better stewardship, please also check out your charities through and (The Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability)