2018 Holiday Program Acknowledgments

SHholidaylogoOur Holiday Program culminates with our Holiday Toy Shop and it takes a village to pull it all together with the compassion and dignity that every family and child deserves. We’d like to thank each and every volunteer, donor, community partner and our amazing staff for making our Holiday Toy Shop an amazing success.

Our Holiday Program starts in November and includes extra Food Distributions, community Thanksgiving Dinners, and so much more.  Our deepest thanks goes out to all of you who stepped up to make a difference for those in need.

For a complete list of holiday acknowledgments, click HERE.

Charin’s Story


 “Where was I to go? I had nowhere to turn and I knew that something was very wrong inside.”  -Charin, Samaritan House patient

Samaritan House was there when a patient with cancer had nowhere to turn. After a harrowing several months, Charin is now cancer-free and is enjoying the holidays with family. This is her story.

Charin has been living and working in San Mateo providing cleaning services for both businesses and private homes. Despite working over 40 hours a week, it was always a struggle to make ends meet. Charin was able to keep her family afloat through the Food Services program at Samaritan House and has been under the care of the Free Clinic in San Mateo.

After trying a new fasting regimen recommended by her friends, Charin felt ill. A normally energetic and vibrant 53 year old, Charin found herself lethargic and continually vomiting.  During the course of one week, her stomach was enlarged to the size of a basketball.  She was in terrible pain and knew something was very wrong. Charin visited the Mill-Peninsula emergency room.  Thanks to our partnership with Mills-Peninsula, she was referred back to our clinic where Samaritan House volunteer physicians took swift action.  Dr. Shubin at our San Mateo Free Clinic conducted a pelvic exam and pap smear.  Charin was referred to Stanford for the ultrasound that confirmed what Dr. Shubin had suspected. Charin had ovarian cancer.  Thanks to the screening examinations and referrals provided by the Samaritan House Free Clinic, Charin underwent surgery and chemotherapy shortly after.

“Samaritan House saved my life and allowed me to take quick action. My family is grateful that they have this time with me to support me and help me heal. Thanks to Samaritan House and all the doctors who helped me, I am cancer-free today.” Charin

Donate Now!






San Carlos Tennis Club Donates to Samaritan House – 2nd Year Running!


On November 13, 2018, members of the San Carlos Tennis Club presented Samaritan House with a generous $7,000 donation. This is the second consecutive year that the San Carlos Tennis Club has lent its support to our programs which serve over 14,000 low-income clients in San Mateo County.

“The San Carlos Tennis Club is pleased to support SamHouse for a second year. We thank Samaritan House for its many programs that benefit those in need.”- Susan Gibson, SCTC President

The check presentation took place at San Carlos City Hall chambers with Mayor Bob Grassilli, Samaritan House CEO Bart Charlow, SCTC President Susan Gibson and SCTC Board Member Tami Adachi.

The San Carlos Tennis Club was organized in 1975 to promote tennis activities in the area. The Club operates in cooperation with the San Carlos School District, headquartering and organizing most SCTC events at the Arundel School tennis courts.  The San Carlos Tennis Club was honored with the USTA Northern California Club of the Year in 2013.

For more information on the Club, please visit www.sancarlostennisclub.com.  Thank you, San Carlos Tennis Club!



2018 Back to School Drive Acknowledgments

back to school drive THANKS


Our deepest thanks for our biggest backpack drive ever. We have collected a total of over 1600 backpacks filled with school supplies for kids in need! 

On behalf of the children of Samaritan House and our partner agencies, thank you for giving kids the opportunity to start the school year with the same sense of confidence and readiness as their more affluent peers.  We wish to thank the many many individuals who donated backpacks, school supplies and cash contributions.  We also extend our gratitude to the many volunteers who contributed their time, talent and heart. None of it would be possible without you all!

We also would like to acknowledge the following corporations, community and faith groups for their generous donations:


Balfour Beatty Group
Box, Inc.
Genentech Inc.
Hope Lutheran
Menlo Church
Mills Peninsula Burlingame
National Charity League, Crystal Springs Chapter
PGH Wong Engineering, Inc.
St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church of San Mateo
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church of Burlingame
Tile INC
Woodside Road United Methodist Church of Redwood City

Our apologies for any errors or omissions.  Please contact Liza Batallones, Public Relations and Communications Manager with corrections at lbatallones@samaritanhousesanmateo.org. 

Frank Somerville Tours Samaritan House Headquarters


Frank Somerville Visits Samaritan House Headquarters in San Mateo
Frank Somerville of KTVU Visits Samaritan House Headquarters in San Mateo


We just had the best visit with Frank Somerville, KTVU anchor. Frank came by for a personal tour of Samaritan House in anticipation of his being our Master of Ceremonies for The Main Event on April 14th.

He slipped by our greeter and walked into Kids Closet. What a delightful story he had to tell about that, but I won’t give it away, as you may hear it at The Main Event.

We discovered how many of us have prior ties with him, his family, his family’s philanthropy and just plain generosity. Of course, he was instantly recognizable to our clients and volunteers all over Samaritan House. And Frank had a smile and a warm greeting and story for everyone he met. At one point, Frank was so moved by the work we do. This man really cares!

So be sure to get your tickets to The Main Event, because we know you’re going to love him hosting.

Tickets are available here: https://donate.samaritanhouse.com/MainEvent

Bart Charlow

Samaritan House CEO

Carla’s Vision for a Better Future

Carla Blog Photo

Often times, our clients have multiple jobs and are still struggling to make ends meet.  This is the reality for so many living in the affluent Silicon Valley.

Carla is a single mom, works 2 part-time jobs and is a graduate student. She has a vision for a better future for herself and her young son.

The Samaritan House programs really supplement my income in that I save on groceries through the food distributions. The Holiday program and the gifts for my 6 year old allow me to set aside funds for rent.  I view Samaritan House as a tool to get ahead until I’m done with school. I’m interviewing for full-time work and I finish grad school this Spring. I’m almost there thanks to Samaritan House.

Carla adds, ”Samaritan House has supported me through this journey and I am so ready to work full-time. I look forward to being to be fully independent.”

It is our privilege to provide hope, dignity and empowerment to people like Carla who are in need of a little help.

Donate Now!


Frank Somerville to Emcee The Main Event 2018

Main Event Frank Somerville Announce 2

Samaritan House is thrilled to announce that our Master of Ceremonies for this year’s Main Event is longtime community advocate and KTVU News Anchor Frank Somerville! KTVU News Anchor Frank Somerville has been a fixture on Bay Area television since the early 90’s. Frank has strong Bay Area roots growing up in Berkeley and currently lives in Oakland. Frank anchors the 5, 6 and 10 pm newscasts. Frank Somerville’s Facebook page ranks the highest on social media for any TV anchor in the country with nearly 547k Facebook fans. He uses his Facebook page as a platform for storytelling and to raise awareness and advocacy for foster care. He openly talks about his relationships with his daughters, one of whom is adopted. Frank Somerville is a 5-time Emmy award winner and community service runs in the family. His father, Bill Somerville, is the Founder of Philanthropic Ventures Foundation based in Oakland. Main Event tickets go on sale in February.


CA Assemblyman Kevin Mullin On the Vital Role of Samaritan House

“I’m here out of recognition of the work that Samaritan House does year round. It’s beyond Thanksgiving. We have an affordable housing crisis in San Mateo County. We have people who are in between jobs, who are living on the margins and who are just trying to get by. Samaritan House really is a backstop for folks that are in need. The entire team at Samaritan House does incredible work year-round.” – Rep. Mullin

Congresswoman Jackie Speier, Longtime Samaritan House Advocate, Speaks to the Importance of The Work We Do

“Samaritan House is one of the phenomenal nonprofits in our county that reaches out to those in need all year. The Holiday Program is so dignified, and so warm….and so loving – it makes everyone feel like they’re very special. And they are.”

We were thrilled to have Congresswoman Jackie Speier, longtime Samaritan House supporter, as an honored guest and helper at our Holiday Toy Shop. Please take a moment to view this interview as Rep. Speier speaks to the importance of the work we do 365 days a year.