Samaritan Inn
The concept of being hospitable to strangers and being mindful of the needs of others is a recurring theme throughout the Old and New Testaments. This Biblical concept drives the mission of Samaritan Inn. The Samaritan Inn homeless shelterprovides safe shelter, plus
breakfast and dinner to homeless men. The shelter capacity is 69, with overflow space for an additional 10-15 people. The shelter operates near capacity year round, with no "slow season".
  Since opening in 1988, homeless people have found hope and healing at Samaritan Inn. The staff of counselors at Samaritan Inn evaluates the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the each guest, working to help each man discover his dignity and self-worth. From that commitment of love have come countless stories of victory over homelessness and addiction, including Project Cornerstone.
Samaritan Inn opened in 1988, but the Inn's seed sprouted in the Samaritan Soup Kitchen a few years before. In feeding the hungry each day, the Soup Kitchen Staff and Volunteers gradually became aware of the guests calling on the Soup Kitchen with no place to call home. Feeling a call to give comfort and shelter to people in need, the Board of Directors voted to add a homeless shelter to the mission and purpose of Samaritan.
Adding the shelter was an ambitious project. The building needed expanding to add the shelter, and the Soup Kitchen would have to serve breakfast and dinner to the homeless guests. Adding services also meant Samaritan needed even more volunteers to step in and meet the needs of the guests.
Again, the community made a miracle happen on Patterson Avenue! With the help of many individuals, including Dalton Ruffin and Aurelia Eller, more than $500,000 was raised to build the Samaritan Inn. Architect Brian Hart of Calloway, Moore and Johnson designed the building free of charge, and Blum Construction Company built the Samaritan Inn. On September 14, 1988, Samaritan Inn opened with bed space for 60 men and 9 women. The Samaritan Inn has provided more than 300,000 nights of shelter since opening. In the year 2000, a night's shelter cost about $10 per person, including dinner and breakfast. For a complete history of Samaritan Ministries, click here.
Samaritan Inn -Volunteer Guidelines
The Samaritan Inn relies on caring volunteers to continue serving homeless men 365 days a year. Each day, people from all faiths and occupations come together, serving food, sharing devotion time and offering comfort to people without a home. Volunteers at the Samaritan Inn stay overnight in most cases. Churches and Community Service Workers play an essential role in operating the shelter. Volunteering at the Samaritan Inn allows you to grow in your awareness of the needs of the poor, and to offer compassion in the face of suffering.
Volunteer teams assist the Staff Counselor on duty. Duties include check-in and check out, serving dinner and breakfast, and a two-hour security shift. Staff and Core Volunteers assist team members in operating the shelter smoothly.
Samaritan Inn is located at 1243 Patterson Avenue. Click here for directions. Read on for more information on volunteer opportunities at Samaritan Inn, or call 748-1962 to join our team!
Shelter Teams
Purpose: Shelter Teams typically consist of six people from a church or other organization. Shelter Teams assist the Staff Counselor and the Staff and Core Volunteers, making sure the guests receive food and shelter in an atmosphere of compassion and warmth.

Duties and Responsibilities:

· Receive job assignments from Staff and Core Volunteers to include: guest check-in, dinner and breakfast preparation and service, leading or participating in devotions, guest check-out the following morning

· Watch security cameras in two-hour shifts overnight with another team member

Time Commitment:
· 6:15 p.m. - 7:30 a.m.

· Team members receive training from Staff Counselor, as well as the Staff and Core Volunteer

Staff Volunteers
Purpose: Staff Volunteers assist and report to the on-duty Staff Counselor, provide leadership to the volunteer team assigned to the check-in area, and greet incoming shelter guests. Staff volunteers demonstrate Christian love, faith and hospitality.

Duties and Responsibilities:

· Welcome and orient volunteers assigned to check-in area at 6:45 p.m.
· Supervise volunteers from check-in through devotions
· Assist Staff Counselor as needed
· Train new Staff Volunteers upon request



· Explain procedures to volunteers, including:
1. Card file
2. Baskets
3. Cigarette file
4. Bagging of belongings
5. Weapons bin
6. Use of metal detector

Explain Samaritan Inn policies, procedures and suspensions to first-time shelter guests
1. Review peach-colored handout with guests
2. Invite newcomers to 10:00 p.m. devotion

1. Welcomes incoming shelter guests
2. Encourages fellowship between volunteers and guests
3. Watches security monitor during devotion (10:00-10:30 p.m.)

Time Commitment:
· 6:30 p.m. - 10:30 p.m. one evening per month
· Staff Volunteers are encouraged to find a substitute in the event of an absence

· Training provided by the Staff Counselor or by another Staff Volunteer on your assigned evening. Attending a one-time Staff Volunteer Orientation is helpful.

Core Volunteer


Purpose: Core Volunteers report to the Staff Counselor, and provide leadership for evening shelter teams in the Soup Kitchen. Core Volunteers demonstrate Christian faith, love and hospitality, and encourage volunteers to grow in their awareness and understanding of the needs of the poor.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Welcome volunteers who arrive at 6:15 p.m.
  • Facilitate volunteer orientation
  • Supervise shelter teams in dinner preparation, serving, cleanup, and evening preparation of breakfast
  • Train new Core Volunteers upon request
  • Attend Core Volunteer meetings once per quarte


1. Name tags for volunteers
2. Introduce Staff Counselor on duty
3. Complete volunteer roster
4. Complete evening schedule and job assignments
5. Ask for a volunteer to lead 10:00 p.m. devotion
6. Review dinner and breakfast menus
7. Review sanitation procedures
8. Review safety procedures


1. Convey Samaritan Mission Statement to volunteers…"providing hope and healing by sharing food, shelter and companionship with the hungry and homeless through Christian love and service"
2. Give brief history of Samaritan Ministries
3. Remind volunteers of the guests' needs after spending the entire day on the streets
4. Devotions and prayer

Tour of building:

1. Identify restrooms, volunteer quarters, designated smoking areas and exits
2. Identify Staff Counselors office. Remind volunteers that Staff Counselor handles all difficult situations

Time Commitment:

  • 6:30 p.m. - 10:30 p.m. one evening per month
  • Core Volunteers are encouraged to find a substitute in the event of an absence


  • Complete three evening shifts under the supervision of an experienced Core Volunteer

Samaritan Ministries
1243 Patterson Avenue
Winston-Salem, NC 27101
Phone: 336-748-1962
Fax: 336-748-8207
Sonjia Kurosky Executive Director


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