Samaritan House provides assistance to low income families and individuals who reside within our service area. The area served by Samaritan House includes the Villages of Romeo and Armada, Townships of Ray, Bruce, Armada and Washington, and both Shelby and Macomb Townships north of 23 Mile Rd. If you live within our service area and would like to learn more about our programs and for what assistance you may qualify, please contact Samaritan House. As Samaritan House is not open 7 days a week, phone messages may be left on the answering machine at any time, and they will be addressed as soon as possible.
The main purpose of Samaritan House is to provide emergency food for those in need. A pantry food order is designed to feed all members of the household three meals a day for 14 days. During our 2015 budget year, the Samaritan House food pantry filled 2,147 requests for groceries. This equates to feeding 5,399 individuals three meals a day for 14 days! This food is donated or purchased with donated funds.
Samaritan House is a distribution center for Focus Hope. As such, we deliver Focus Hope food orders to qualified seniors who live in our service area. Seniors can receive assistance at Samaritan House to determine their eligibility and to apply for Focus Hope food assistance through the U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.
Samaritan House is also a distribution center for Macomb County Community Services Agency (MCCSA). MCCSA provides emergency food through their Macomb Food Program. The criteria to access the Macomb Food Program requires only that a person be a Macomb County resident and have an emergency need for food. The person in need of emergency food must call United Way information/referral 2-1-1 (or 1-800-552-1183). Once approved, arrangements can be made to receive commodity food orders through Samaritan House for those residing in our service area.
As an independent Christian organization, Samaritan House is not bound to governmental restrictions. When a client has a need that may not fall within other specified boundaries, Samaritan House can consider that need. In the past, Samaritan House has been able to assist with water well pumps, structural repairs to dwellings, medical needs, and furnace and water heater replacement. Much of this assistance was given in cooperation with other agencies. This program assisted 20 people during the 2014 fiscal year at a cost of $1,421.
Easter and Thanksgiving Holiday Meals
Each client household is afforded the opportunity to pick up a $15 gift certificate for the meat of their choice and a box of food specially packed to supply the items needed for a traditional Easter dinner in the spring and a traditional Thanksgiving dinner in November. In the 2015 fiscal year, 212 families participated in the Easter program and 249 families picked up food for Thanksgiving.
Shelter & Utility Assistance
Shelter Assistance provides financial help to avoid eviction, or for payment of the first month's rent on move in. Last fiscal year, 7 households received assistance of $1,993 through this program. Utility assistance is designated to help keep water, natural gas, propane gas, heating oil and electrical services in operation. 10 households benefited from this program during the 2015 fiscal year at a cost of $2,158.
Free Tax Preparation Program
This program offers students entering preschool through the eighth grade, a new age and gender appropriate backpack filled with suitable school supplies plus a $20 Payless Shoes gift card. In August 2015, 188 backpacks valued at $7,954, were distributed to students.
Sharing Tree Program
This program is designed to ensure that every member of each participating household has gifts under their tree on Christmas morning and the makings of a traditional holiday dinner. In October, program volunteers meet with clients to complete their individualized wish list. Tags are created for each individual describing his/her wishes. The tags are then distributed to our sponsoring churches, local businesses, libraries and other organizations. The generous people of our communities select tags and fulfill the wishes.
For the 2014 Christmas season, 2,100 gifts were given to 900 individuals, including members at seven area senior citizen and group homes. Each client household is also provided a gift certificate to a local store to purchase food for Christmas dinner. Gift certificates were donated by Romeo Goodfellows, Shepherd’s Gate Lutheran Church, local businesses and Samaritan House.