2021 Virtual Next Step Breakfast On Saturday, March 20, Samaritan Ministry held it’s 2021 Next Step Breakfast. More than 500 people gathered virtually with PBS NewsHour White House Correspondent Yamiche Alcindor, Samaritan Next Step participant speaker Ben Morgan, volunteer witness Ivy Kilby, Commitment speaker Michele Lewis-Muzzatti,  and Executive Director David B. Wolf, who talked about who we are, what we do, and where we’re going.    Because of the pandemic, we were not able to gather in person (again!) this year, but our virtual format made it possible for more people …

Pivoting in the Pandemic: Six Months and Beyond!

by Rev. David Wolf, ED You may know that, in several languages, the word for “crisis” is the same word for “opportunity”.  I find this to be a helpful reminder in this pandemic period because, for all the challenges we are facing – in both Samaritan Ministry and the world at large – I continue to see this as a …

Reflections and Hope from the Southeast Office

by Naima Harrison                       America is known as the “land of the free and the home of the brave”, but this is not always the case for many of our Participants and Visitors at Samaritan Ministry. Now, almost more than ever, it seems that division – over COVID-19, over the …

Volunteering During the Coronavirus Crisis

During the COVID-19 crisis, SMGW offices have had to adapt to continue to serve participants while maintaining physical distance. We have set up abbreviated hours on our porches, where they receive food, toiletries, mail and schedule phone appointments for assistance with services such as filling out job applications, the Census 2020 form, and arranging Burial Assistance. Although the pick-up times …

Meet Benja Reilly, This Year’s Casework Intern

Samaritan Ministry is fortunate to have Benja Reilly as a Casework Intern at the Northwest Office through the Westmoreland Service Corps in Bethesda, MD. Benja was called to service early in his life. At age seven, he began to serve as an interpreter for his mother, who is deaf. He calls ASL (American Sign Language) his first language because that …

SMGW Training Goes Virtual!

Establishing relationships of trust and understanding are the essence of Samaritan Ministry’s work. At this time of physical distancing, staff and volunteers are called upon to be creative in maintaining connection with our participants as well as with each other. For Our Participants Creativity is demonstrated through our STRIVE job readiness program, which has been transformed from a three-week in-person …

Our Neighbors: Returning Citizens

As of 2015, more than 23,000 individuals in the DMV area are returning citizens, or previously incarcerated people. In Maryland, 4,411 men and women are returning citizens. In addition, Virginia has more than 12,000 returning citizens, including more than 500 juveniles. These returning citizens face many barriers, including homelessness and joblessness. In our nation’s capital, these problems are often compounded …

Remembering Jim Johnstone: Samaritan Saint!

Not as many of us may recall those early years of SMUG-WA’s founding (1986) when handful of key leaders, and 12 symbolic Partner Churches came together to form the faith-based community partnership that came to be known as Samaritan Ministry.   One of those key leaders was a Senior Warden – one of two top lay leaders in an Episcopal parish …

A Message to Samaritan Ministry Participants

I hope you are well and have stayed safe since the onset of this public health crisis!  SMGW recognizes that this is a time of great uncertainty for all of us, for our communities, and for the world. While it seems like things are changing every day as we battle this pandemic, we want you to know that SMGW’s commitment to …

CARES Act – Information for Donors

The 2020 CARES Act, passed in response to the coronavirus, contains some new tax allowances that donors should be aware of: A new allowance for non-itemizing taxpayers (i.e. those who take the “standard deduction”) to claim a $300 “above-the-line” deduction for donations to 501(c)(3) organizations; and For individuals and corporations that do itemize, significant increases in the percentage of income they …