Poverty, race and a way up

Conference to address providing options for those in poverty

Creating Options SliderIn Minnesota alone, more than 600,000 people—or 11.9% of the population—live in poverty, according to the Joint Religious Legislative Coalition (JRLC). That statistic is astounding enough—but it gets worse. The poverty rate for children is 14.1%, meaning 174,000 children live in a world where adequate food, clothing, housing and other necessities are not promised tomorrow.

For households headed by women in the state, the JRLC reports that the poverty rate skyrockets to nearly 28%.

While these rates are not considered high nationally, Minnesota’s poverty rate among minorities unfortunately places the state above the national average.

According to the JRLC, the poverty rate for Asian American children is 22%, giving Minnesota the highest rate in the nation. In addition, among African American children, the rate is 47%, putting Minnesota at the fifth highest in the nation.

What do these statistics mean?

For too many Minnesotans, the path to financial stability and well-being is limited or blocked, preventing them from securing the necessary resources to survive and thrive.

Bethel University will serve as the host site for the Creating Options Together Conference July 22 – 25. The event, sponsored by Cru (formerly Here’s Life Inner City), will address providing options for those in poverty and offer diverse voices on a wide range of topics, including ethnic and racial harmony, urban apologetics, creating pathways to employment, comprehensive biblical justice, choosing and building leaders and others.

Speakers include John Perkins, T. Cher Moua, Edrin Williams, K. A. Ellis, John Sather and more.

Carl Nelson, president and CEO of Transform Minnesota, believes the Creating Options Together Conference is a great way to learn from others.

“One of the reasons Transform Minnesota connects evangelicals is to help us learn together,” he said. “The event is an especially great opportunity to learn from minority voices and leaders who are immersed in urban ministry and oppressed communities.”

Regular registration for the event is $295.

Transform Minnesota is providing $50 per day scholarships to local ministry partners of Cru, so that pastors of inner city churches can participate for just $25. For more information about this scholarship, contact Ryan Sather at ryan.sather@cru.org.

For additional information about the conference, visit http://www.hlic.org/creatingoptionstogether.