The Story Begins…

The Dr. Cora Clemons award is inspired by the community service work and selfless spirit of our founder, Dr. Cora Clemons, R.N., M.F.C.C., M.P.H., Ph.D. In 1974, Dr. Clemons was concerned that basic social services of food, housing, and medical care were difficult to access. She saw a need and took action.

When she convened her associates, family and friends to discuss the problem, they came up with the idea of forming a nonprofit social services agency located in the north central neighborhood of San Mateo.

In December 1974, Samaritan House opened its doors in a two bedroom house with a Salvation Army worker, a representative from the U.C. Department of Nutrition, and visiting staff from the county health department.

Over the years, Samaritan House has grown into a vital countywide agency providing food, shelter, healthcare, clothing, counseling, worker resources, and holiday assistance to those in need. Samaritan House is more dedicated than ever to respecting and fulfilling Dr. Clemons’ vision by fighting poverty and lifting lives.

Inspired by Dr. Clemon’s life-long learning, dedication and advocacy, we are proud to announce the establishment of the Dr. Cora Clemons Emerging Young Samaritan Award.

Award Description

This annual $2,000 award recognizes young changemakers in San Mateo County, whose community service work models Dr. Clemons’ commitment to service. The award committee welcomes nominees who take initiative to make an impact in their community, and exemplify the value and power of compassion and empathy. Nominees can directly apply or be nominated by a community member.
The award committee welcomes and values all projects and work that honor Dr. Clemons’ legacy and Samaritan House’s mission of fighting poverty and lifting lives. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:
  • Organizing and implementing community service programs/projects that serve others
  • Leading/promoting civic activism
  • Developing academic outreach programs to local individuals/groups
  • Advocating for environmental sustainability

Award Eligibility

The recipient should meet all of the following requirements:
  • 16-22 years old on January 1, 2023
  • Lives in and serves community members in San Mateo County
  • Represents the commitment to community service that was modeled by Dr. Clemons
Applications must be submitted by midnight on Wednesday, March 1st, 2023. The award recipient(s) will be selected early March and recognized at the annual Samaritan House Main Event in April.

You may submit the application online OR download a copy and email the completed form to . Applications may also be mailed to the Samaritan House Award Committee at 4031 Pacific Blvd. San Mateo 94403.

For questions, please contact the Samaritan House Award Committee: