As part of our Holiday Program, this year Samaritan House celebrated Thanksgiving at the King Center with a delicious, traditional holiday meal and a cheerful place for people to go. Staff and a plethora of volunteers spent the day serving dinners to over 300 members of the San Mateo community and handing out an additional 100 takeout meals. Even more, Samaritan House served Thanksgiving dinner for 40 at St. Matthew’s Hotel, a subsidized hotel for low income and disabled folks.
Volunteers spent the morning decorating tables with seasonal flowers donated by local markets and they festooned the walls with posters and paper turkeys made by school children. Then, people sat down to a hot meal of turkey, ham, potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, stuffing, rolls and pie.
Samaritan House’s Dining Room Manager, Mario Cousenses spoke with one family of five at the Thanksgiving dinner who had just arrived from Mexico about a month ago. “They don’t have a steady home or steady jobs yet but they found out about the free Thanksgiving Dinner through the Worker Resource Center (WRC). They were very grateful to have a happy place to go,” says Cousenses. The WRC is another Samaritan House program that offers a safe location for temporary laborers and employers to meet for work.
After the community dinner wrapped, Ruby Kaho-the Kitchen Manager at Samaritan House, personally delivered meals to her church and to the homes of people who couldn’t make it out to the event. The bustling Samaritan House Kitchen provides over 145,000 meals every year and they feed well over 3,000 hungry people every month, many of whom are children. Our kitchen, pantry and dining services fill the gap between the need for nutrition and the ability people need to thrive and move forward.