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Evangelical Lutheran Church In America
"Strengthening the Church"


Barnabas Uplift
An Interfaith Social Ministry Network to Lift Iowans Out of Poverty


To eliminate poverty by encouraging individuals, families and communities to move toward self-sufficiency.

Barnabas Uplift offers programs to help individuals, families and communities in Iowa move beyond poverty:

Certified Nursing Assistant Training
Barnabas Uplift works with area community colleges and sponsoring churches to offer the 75-hour instruction and clinical course to prepare students for the CNA certification exam and a career as nursing assistants. The training takes place at Bethany Lutheran, Iowa Falls; Zion Lutheran, Oelwein; and St. Paul Lutheran, Postville. It is offered free for qualified individuals whose income is no more than 200 percent above the poverty line. Contact Pastor Mark Anderson to apply.

Earned Income Tax Credit Assistance Program
Free tax preparation assistance is available to help low-income Iowans complete tax returns so they can receive the refunds they are entitled to. Congregations participate by providing a location where tax documents can be photocopied, tax payers can log in, and volunteers can assist with filing. Those needing income tax help through the program may contact one of the participating churches below:
     St. Paul Lutheran, Postville
     Our Savior's Lutheran, Mason City
     St. Paul Lutheran, Hampton
     Zion Lutheran, Oelwein

Mission Health Program
In partnership with healthcare providers, routine medical care is provided on a sliding fee scale. Enrollees can also qualified for financial assistance. 

Substance Abuse Awareness
Resources for preventing substance abuse are available to help families overcome poverty.


Hear comments from a recent graduate of the Barnabas Uplift Certified Nursing Assistant Training Program.



Read about Barnabas Uplift in the February 2010 issue of the Northeastern Iowa Synod's Star newsletter.

Barnabas Uplift Helps Iowans Begin Careers in Caring
The Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) Training Program of Barnabas Uplift capped off a successful year of growth in rural areas, with seven classes graduating in the last two months alone. According to Pastor Vince Ramos, Barnabas Uplift state coordinator, the program’s expansion into rural Iowa communities has reached people who may not have otherwise had the means to pursue a health care career.

“By working with the community colleges, we’re able to

reach a very specific group of folks that the colleges alone

may not have reached before,” Ramos says.

Read more ...


Pastor Mark Anderson
Assistant to the Bishop, Northeastern Iowa Synod


email: andersonm@neiasynod.org

Visit the Barnabas Uplift website



Read testimony about Barnabas Uplift that Pastor Mark Anderson, assistant to the Bishop, presented at the "Preserving America's Economic Security" field hearing led by Senator Tom Harkin Feb. 5, 2011. The hearing
discussed the ways federal funding has helped give Iowans the education and skills they need to find jobs.

Download Full Testimony PDF Format  


"I was the first person in my immediate family to graduate from high school. I completed my CNA training and am continuing classes to become an LPN. I'm working a steady job and doing well in my courses!" --Alexandria












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