September 1, 2018 at 6:00 pm

Wealth & Poverty | Good Works, Inc.: A Community of Hope, Sept. 25

Wealth and Poverty Week: Action on Inequality, with graphic in background showing two coins.

The Wealth and Poverty theme at Ohio University presents alum Keith Wasserman on “Good Works, Inc.: A Community of Hope” on Tuesday, Sept. 25, from noon-1 p.m. in Alden 319.

Wasserman, who is founder and executive director of Good Works, earned his bachelor’s degree from Ohio University’s University College in 1981.

Wasserman is one of six speakers during “Action on Inequality Week” from Sept. 21-28.

Keith Wasserman, portrait

Keith Wasserman

The Community of HOPE called Good Works has been involved in relationships with our neighbors struggling with poverty in rural Ohio for 37 years.  Starting with shelter to people experiencing homelessness in 1981, Good Works has developed 15+ different initiatives focused on caring for widows, children in poverty and people without homes. Biblical hospitality, that is the practice of welcoming marginalized people into healthy community, is our paradigm.  This presentation will discuss the different initiatives of Good Works and some of the philosophy and transferable principles that sustain our work.

Keith Wasserman grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and came to Athens to attend Ohio University in 1976 at the age of 18.  Prior to that, Keith spent five years as a drug addict. Keith completed a degree in General Studies and Mental Health in 1981, and later received an Honorary Doctorate from Asbury Theological Seminary. Keith started Good Works during his final year at OU by welcoming people experiencing homelessness into his remodeled basement apartment. This is Keith’s 37th year overseeing and developing the community of Good Works.  Keith has been married to Darlene for 37 years and they have one son, Timothy.  They live in the city of Athens and continue to host people experiencing homelessness at their home when the Good Works shelter (The Timothy House) is full.

“I moved to Athens, Ohio in the fall of 1976 to attend Ohio University, and it was in Athens that I felt the desire and call towards full-time Christian service. During my senior year at Ohio University, in conjunction with a degree in mental health, I remodeled the basement of my home on Elliott Street in Athens into a two-bedroom apartment to assist what we then called ‘displaced persons.’ I had a vision from scripture (Luke 4:18-19) to reach out to the people who were without a home and struggling with poverty in rural Southeast Ohio. That vision came to a reality in 1981 when I established Good Works Inc. with the help of friends and supporters,” he says on the Good Works website.

“The vision of good works is to create and sustain a community of hope with and for people who are struggling with poverty and homelessness in rural Appalachia. As a Christian community, we are seeking to grow in our love for God and for our neighbor. We offer contexts through which people in need can experience biblical hospitality, access practical assistance, and share their gifts / abilities with others. In doing so, we facilitate ways for people from all walks of life to build relationships of love and service with their neighbors,” according to the Good Works home page.

any questions, please contact Yeong Kim at

About Action on Inequality Week

Going beyond teaching, learning, and advocating for equality, many are taking positive, important actions against inequalities in income, health, education, and well-being in local communities. The Wealth and Poverty Week on Action on Inequality brings the OHIO community together to discuss various actions to combat the growing inequalities in our society and advance the common good.

Wealth and Poverty theme logo

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