The Good Samaritan Center has been assisting families and individuals in emergency situations for over 40 years. Through the years it has worked closely with other organizations such as churches and community groups, to form a “network of helping hands.” Good Sam’s secret to their success is knowing who to turn to for specific services and assistance and collaborating with their community partners to not only help solve immediate crises, but to help families develop the skills and strategies required for a more stable future.
THE GOOD SAM PHILOSOPHY
Good Samaritan Center focuses on families who are experiencing unexpected (yet verifiable) emergencies beyond their control. Instead of just helping with the immediate crisis and sending a family on its way with good wishes, the staff strives to make a “long-term” difference by using the occasion of “short-term” emergency assistance to intervene.
The case management team at Good Samaritan Center works hard to supply information and make appropriate referrals, to budget counsel and to advocate for its clients. It also works with area churches to provide guidance in handling the multitude of request calls that churches receive on a weekly basis. The team has a very thorough knowledge of what emergency services and funds are available throughout the community, forming a network of emergency assistance and referral. Their motto is “If we can’t help, we should know (or be able to find out) what organizations can assist.”
Good Samaritan case managers attempt to help all clients determine the basic cause of their emergency so that appropriate changes can be made in the household. Meanwhile they are providing assistance from the Center and are working with the families to help them avoid a reoccurrence of the crisis in the future (i.e., opportunities versus “band-aids”, long term solutions versus short term fixes).
GOOD SAM PROGRAMS AND SERVICES
The ways the Good Samaritan Center helps families in need is wide-ranging. Following are just a few of the ways it serves the Greater Jackson community from it’s location at 114 Millsaps Avenue in Jackson.
Clothing Assistance The clothing assistance program is Good Samaritan Center’s only non-emergency program open to anyone who has a need! It also is available for those who have emergency situations such as fire, burglary, and shelter residents.
Currently, Good Sam is able to assist those in need two times per year, to stretch household budgets. Families can sign up for assistance by coming by the Center: Monday at 12:00 pm; Wednesday at 12:00 pm; and Friday at 12:00 pm.
The Center offers appointments on Thursday’s for shelters and centers. For details or to schedule an appointment, call the Center at 601-355-6276.
Food Assistance The Good Samaritan Center’s food assistance program helps individuals and families who are either in the process of applying for food stamps or having a verifiable food emergency. In both cases, food assistance is given for the entire length of need or emergency. There is no preset limit of assistance like many other pantries. The Center assists with 4 meals or 40 meals depending on the verified need of the client. It will also assist with cleaning and personal care supplies on a case-by-case basis.
Client Hours for food assistance: Sign in at noon on Monday, Wednesday or Friday for Clothing & Food, Thursday is reserved for group appointments and food emergencies with sign in at noon.
NUTS Vouchers Many clients seen at Good Samaritan for food or clothing also receive a Gift Certificate to our resale store, NUTS – Neat Used Things for Sale. Good Samaritan clients can purchase additional household items or clothing they may need. The hope is that they will see how amazing the store is and return to shop!
Support for Churches The Good Samaritan Center continues to focus on helping member churches handle the large number of assistance requests that they receive on a regular basis. It is the only organization in the greater Jackson area whose primary function continues to be to assist member churches in handling emergency crisis requests.
Travel Assistance This program is designed to assist “non-local” families, with children, who have a verifiable emergency beyond their control that has caused the family to be stranded in the greater Jackson area.
Prescription/Medical Assistance This program is designed to assist individuals who have a verifiable emergency beyond their control that has caused them to be unable to purchase the medication or medical supplies they need. The Center does not ordinarily assist with pain relievers, narcotics or any mood-altering drugs.
Good Sam empowers the people it serves to improve their lives every day. There is a host of ways you can get involved and help the Good Samaritan Center in its mission. All help is needed and all help is appreciated.
Financial Contributions You can donate online using PayPal to pay by credit cards, debit cards, online check (bank draft) or PayPal account to make your gift. If you would like to make a monthly recurring donation, you can use PayPal to set it up. You can also contribute financially by mailing your monetary gift by check to The Good Samaritan Center, P.O. Box 4955, Jackson, MS 39296-4944. If you like, you can specify that your gift is in memory or in honor of someone special.
Material Contributions Good Samaritan accepts donations of all kinds. if you have food, clothing, household items, furniture, school supplies, good paint, etc. that you would like to see go to disadvantaged families or sold in our resale store you can drop them by the Center.
All donations are tax deductible and receipts are made available upon donation.
Donation Drop-off Hours: Drop-off’s can be made at the Center or at NUTS – Neat Used Things for Sale. The best times to drop donations off at the Center are 9 am – 5 pm Monday, 9 am – 5 pm Wednesday, 12 pm – 5 pm Thursday or 12 pm – 5 pm Friday.
Advocacy There are many ways to help a family in need without actually donating. To sign-up to help raise money for Good Samaritan, call the Center or visit How You Can Help at www.goodsamaritancenter.org.
You can also help by shopping at the NUTS resale store or by playing bingo in Laurel, MS on 16th Avenue, down from Roses and next to NUTS – Neat Used Things for Sale in the Parkside Plaza Shopping Center.
You can also support Good Samaritan by attending and participating in special fundraising events throughout the year. Visit the Good Samaritan website for more information.