Good Samaritan Center assistance programs.

The Good Samaritan Center focuses primarily on offering assistance in the form of referrals to qualified applicants. The charity serves clients who are residents of Douglas County who are in the midst of a financial crisis. Using a collaboration that is created between the client and a staff member or volunteer from the faith based organization, financial relief is pledged when possible to help resolve their crisis.

The agency as well as its partners are committed to offering the necessary resources to help a struggling family. Examples of some of the assistance a client may receive through the program include energy bill help as well as shelter or free food. There is also gently used clothing, hygiene items, furniture or household items from the thrift store. As noted, referrals are a key service. The staff also work with community agencies to help resolve an emergency situation for the client.

Hundreds of items such as clothing, boxes of groceries and household items are available to low income individuals and families through the Thrift Store and Food Pantry. These resources are available 5 days a week for those in need. However if there is not enough inventory, then the site may stop operating on occasion. The inventory is generously donated and prepared by volunteers and community members.

Special dietary needs can often be satisfied as well. As an example, for low income clients who have diabetes or seniors, Good Samaritan Center has food packages ready to distribute on a monthly basis. Requests for friendly foods for certain diets have increased over the years and it has been troublesome to receive enough donations for clients living with these conditions. So anyone in Douglasville Georgia that has hard to find groceries or food items, please do contribute.

For low-income households in a given fiscal year, there is a limited amount of clothing from the thrift store. Good Samaritan Center provides both back to school clothes for children or replacement items. There can also be professional work attire for those seeking a job.

Through the Good Samaritan Center donation service, Thanksgiving Food Boxes are distributed in November of each year. Within the package passed out are the necessary items to create a Thanksgiving meal for the household. In addition, if funding allows, a gift certificate is given to each low-income family towards the purchase of a turkey or ham at a participating local grocery store. A photo ID and proof of residency in Douglas County in required to participate in this program.





Clients from struggling, low-income households may utilize the agency to learn and acquire skills leading to gainful, long term employment. They will find thorough educational, technical and vocational programs. This will help them obtain the necessary means needed to live a life of financial independence. Any client with entrepreneurial goals will find specific help in this area when using the program. Good Samaritan Centers may be used by any resident in the community seeking employment in the business arena.

For those in the community who are currently unemployed or simply not working enough hours, the Samaritan Center offers workshops which cover a wide range of topics necessary to find work. Sessions covered include interviewing skills, resume writing, job searches and how to use social media are covered.

Participants of this service will also have free job coaching available to them after completing the sessions. The workshops are for anyone, however, it is mainly focused on offering opportunities to those who live locally. It tries to address all races and nationalities as well in Douglas County, as much of the information is available in English and Spanish. There are also partnerships in place with the local job placement centers in Georgia, which also provide support.

Low income households in need of assistance with utilities or rent may qualify for help. While Good Samaritan Center does not offer assistance if their funding runs out, they will then offer referrals. Utility bills are paid during specified months (such as November to May) by the state of Georgia.

There is a one-time opportunity for an eligible, working poor household to receive rent or mortgage assistance in a fiscal year. For those who wish to qualify for a grant, they must provide the following. The volunteer from the Good Samaritan Center will need a copy of the lease agreement as well as proof of income and residency.

Other conditions may include, but are not limited to the following. If the landlord of the property is a relative or friend, that applicant must bring a notarized letter stating how long the tenant has resided in the rental unit. This also needs to show the monthly rent amount due. If a tenant has been in court over various tenant issues, other rules apply for eligibility to the program. If someone currently receives funding from HUD or human services from Section 8 or reside in state provided temporary housing, they will not qualify for funds.

Good Samaritan Center can refer people to the Housing Choice Voucher Program. This provides rental subsidies for low income, eligible families. This program is funded by the Department of Housing and Urban Renewal (HUD). The main focus of this Douglas County assistance program is to provide struggling families with safe and affordable accommodations.





As part of the application process for a voucher, staff members do a thorough inspection of the property. They will also work with landlords to make sure the home is repaired and move in ready for clients. There are also periodic inspections and recertification to ensure the home or apartment remains safe for families who reside there. In some cases, emergency section 8 vouchers may help the local family find a home to live in less time.

The Douglasville based agency can be reached at (770) 949-7335. They may be able to arrange for other support as well.


By Jon McNamara

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