Touching the future by helping children and families today

Loving neighbors, seeking justice, empowering the least among us, and renewing the Church's social ministry

Urban Ministry
420 N. 4th Street
Lafayette, IN

(765) 423-2691


Office Hours:
M-F 8:15am-4:30pm

Homeless Shelter:
Open every night.
Check-in from


Copyright 2003
Urban Ministry




Welcome to the Lafayette Urban Ministry

The Lafayette Urban Ministry (LUM) is an organization of 42 Christian churches that serves as a social safety net for Lafayette's needy children and families.

For over 40 years, LUM has worked to give back the hope, the future, and the self-respect to low-income people in the Greater Lafayette area. We take an active role in trying to change social injustices and improve the quality of life for the poor of Indiana.

We invite you to learn about LUM and keep up to date with the latest LUM news and developments.


Update: LUM Tax Assistance Recap

LUM Tax Assistance Impacts Local Economy



For 12 years, Lafayette Urban Ministry has partnered with the IRS Volunteers in Tax Assistance (VITA) Program to bring free, quality, tax return preparation services to hundreds of low-income wage earners in our community. This year,  1,920 joint and individual state and federal tax returns were prepared. More than $4.5 million in tax refunds and tax credits were returned to local low-income households and funneled back into our local economy.


Almost  80 LUM volunteers study each year and receive IRS certification to prepare tax returns. It’s a big commitment of time and effort, but the payoff for volunteers is big too.


Lee Schwartz has volunteered at LUM for six tax seasons. Schwartz donates 30 hours of his time each week to the LUM Tax Assistance Program. Schwartz states,

“I enjoy helping people in such a real and tangible way. For some of my clients, a full one-third of their annual income comes from the tax refund we are able to secure for them through LUM. And because we don’t charge for our service, low-income wage earners are much more likely to file their returns.”

Any married couple or individual who make $53,000 or less in annual income is generally eligible to have their return prepared at LUM. The average 2013 adjusted gross income of those we served his year was only 

The average refund for this year was $2,345. With their refunds, the LUM tax assistance clients pay back bills, get caught up on their rent, purchase new clothes for their children, and even pay for tuition at IVY Tech. Some have even used it as down payment on the purchase of a home. Not only are the refunds important to the tax payer, but collectively they also add a significant boost to our local retail economy. When you consider the many jobs created and maintained by this sector, LUM’s tax program has a significant multiplier effect as well.

LUM volunteer tax preparers consistently share that the best part about their volunteer work is that they gain a better understanding of the lives of low-income wage earners. Lee Schwartz states,

“My stereotypes are challenged every time I come to LUM. I am amazed by how hard people work, how far they are able to stretch their limited dollars. It’s a real eye opener.”

LUM Executive Director Joe Micon says that the income tax assistance program is probably the most significant thing LUM does each year in its mission to support working families and their children. Micon states,

“The positive impact of these dollars cannot be understated.”

The 2014 LUM Tax Assistance Program is led by Sandra Dunn-El and Ron Smith. For more information on the LUM Income Tax Assistance Program, click HERE.

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LUM Financial Reports
Asset/Liability Report
Annual Report 2013

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Charitable Donations
from IRAs
for 2012 and 2013

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA) extended the qualified charitable distribution (QCD) provisions for 2012 and 2013. Several special transition rules were included in ATRA to enable taxpayers to have a donation made before February 1, 2013, treated as a 2012 QCD.

A QCD is an otherwise taxable distribution from an IRA (other than an ongoing SEP or SIMPLE IRA) owned by an individual who is age 70-1/2 or over that is paid directly from the IRA to a qualified charity. An IRA owner can exclude from gross income up to $100,000 of a QCD made for a year, and a QCD can be used to satisfy any IRA required minimum distributions (RMDs) for the year. Also, the amount of a QCD excluded from gross income is not taken into account in determining any deduction for charitable contributions. (See Notice 2007-7), Section IX, for additional information on QCDs.)