Not All Heroes Wear Capes

Blog Post 
By: Rachel Spencer ( )

Rachel Spencer (Edited)Traffic is miserable in the . It’s not because the highways are small or that traffic lights aren’t programed properly, but because people are flocking here. As the number of cars on the road continues to increase, the number of people looking for housing is also increasing at a high rate.

As the Bay Area’s population continues to grow, the supply of rental units is rapidly decreasing and the demand for them is increasing, which is causing rental prices to sharply incline year after year.  For the affluent, the high rental rates are often discussed as an annoyance. For the working class, the high rental rates are crippling. If you want to survive the cost of living in the Bay Area, a single household needs to make a minimum of$78,000/year. Most working class individuals are working hard at jobs that pay minimum wage.  Imagine: for one household to make $78,000/year, it would require 4.7 full time minimum wage jobs!

Despite working full time and doing all that is in their control working class families are struggling to scrape by and, just when it all gets to be too much to handle, Samaritan House swoops in to save the day.

The name Samaritan House reflects perfectly the nature of the good work that they do. It calls to mind the story of The Good Samaritan.  In short, the story depicts a man who was a victim to thieves during his travels, leaving him without any possessions and half dead on the side of the street. As he lay there, people walked past him and avoided him until another traveler from Samaria helped him by tending to his wounds, giving him a safe place to stay and being a true hero for this man in need. Samaritan House exemplifies the compassion for the needy in today’s San Mateo.

In San Mateo alone, there is not a shortage of people who need help meeting their basic needs. As they come to Samaritan House, they are treated like dignified human beings and helped to get a roof over their heads, clothing on their children’s backs and food in their stomachs.

On any given day, you can go to Samaritan House in San Mateo to find a 3 story building full of compassion, dedication, humility, kindness, and laughter working day-in and day-out to meet the basic needs of those who can’t do it on their own. In other words, you’ll find a 3 story building full of heroes, and remember, not all heroes wear capes.

Community Connections Blog Posts are comprised of narratives from the people who know Samaritan House the best- our staff, clients, and volunteers!

Everyone is invited to participate, please email your experience with Samaritan House to rebecca@samaritanhousesanmatao.org.

Today is Giving Tuesday!

#GivingTuesday is a simple idea. Just pick one of the many ways for you, your family, your community, or your organization to come together to support Samaritan House. Join us and be a part of a global celebration of a new tradition of generosity.Giving Tuesday 2015 Final

President Obama recognize ‪#‎GivingTuesday‬ in his Thanksgiving address. He said “On this uniquely American holiday, we also remember that so much of our greatness comes from our generosity. There’s the generosity of Americans who at food banks and shelters, making sure that no one goes hungry on a day when so many plates are full. There’s the generosity of Americans who take part not just in Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but Giving Tuesday — recognizing that in the holiday season, what you is as important as what you get.” You can hear the President’s address here: https://www.whitehouse.gov/…/weekly-address-thanksgiving-re…

Samaritan House relies on the compassion, power, and generosity of those looking to give back to deliver our humanitarian mission. From delivering food and clothing to teaching news financial skills or healthier lifestyles – Samaritan House supports local people who need our help. We preserve dignity, promote self sufficiency, and provide hope for real families, individuals, and children in our community.

On Giving Tuesday, help support Samaritan House’s mission – to mobilize the resources of our community to help those among us who are in need.

How to Help:

## NOW

VOLUNTEER

RUN A DONATION DRIVE!

DONATE FOOD & TOYS

FAMILY & SENIOR SHARING

Visit http://samaritanhousesanmateo.org/how-you-can-help/ for more information on how you can support Samaritan House.

Safe Harbor Shelter’s Monthly Birthday Bash!

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Safe Harbor Shelter residents had an awesome birthday party this month, celebrating the 10 residents who have an August birthday!

This is the second time Safe Harbor Shelter has had a birthday bash. The first one happened last May and was orchestrated with the help of a former Safe Harbor Shelter resident and her church, Central Peninsula.

“I must tell you, it feels so glorious to be back there and be with the residents,” says the former resident herself. “Not only did the residents have a fun time, we (volunteers) had so much fun spending time with them too.”

Carol Laughlin, Samaritan House’s Director of Volunteers, says they plan to continue putting on this event as long as it as it makes the residents happy.

Safe Harbor Shelter is Samaritan House’s 90 bed emergency homeless shelter located in South San Francisco. Homeless individuals 18 years and older and from San Mateo County are permitted to enter the shelter on a first-come, first-served basis. The shelter is operated in collaboration with the County of San Mateo Human Services Agency.

 

A Little Change Goes a Long Way!

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There’s still time to make your 2014 year-end tax deductible gift! Start the New Year right by helping neighbors in your community who are less fortunate.

It’s never too late for a charitable contribution to the work of Samaritan House!

In fact, right up through midnight on December 31st you can make a stock or cash donation in any form that would qualify for tax deductions. We can use your help right now, because thousands of families NEED our help right now.  Donate today!

So spread a little of that holiday cheer and feel really great that you have started the 2015 New Year right!

2014 Holiday Program Highlights

With the help of our generous volunteers & donors we were able to create a brighter holiday for the 1,750 children who received new toys, coats and books, and over 1,200 households that received food.

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Food Distributions: Our special food distributions during November & December provided groceries – such as fresh fruits & veggies, canned goods, hams and turkeys to over 1,200 families.

 

 

 

 

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Toy Shoppe:  1,750 very happy children and their parents picked out three to five toys for each child, a book and a coat. Toys included things like Legos, dolls, games, educational toys, gift cards and sporting equipment. Extra special thanks for the donated books from Barnes and Noble! Books also were donated from school groups, service clubs, and individual donors from around the community.

 

 

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Family Sharing Program: 110 families more than 30 seniors were supported this year through our Family Sharing Program (FSP). FSP allows donors to give in a more personal way by selecting a specific family to sponsor. Donors included individuals, families, church and civic groups, businesses and schools.

 

 

 

12-8-2014 Wee Care CraftingWee Care Program: Over twenty  elementary and middle schools participated in our Wee Care Program. Parents, teachers and volunteers teach students about the needs of the community. They create cheerful decorations and organize food, clothing and toys drives that are eventually distributed to the Samaritan House clients.

 

 

 

 

All of this was made possible with the caring and sharing of so many donors in our community and the 1,000 volunteers who came together to hand out toys, food, and help clients pick warm coats. Thank you to all those who support our holiday program every year!