Our History

Our Story

Since our founding in 1983, Good Samaritan Haven has been at the forefront of addressing homelessness in central Vermont. It began with the community’s collective efforts to establish our region’s first homeless shelter, which served its first guest on June 23, 1986, in Barre City. Our mission has thrived thanks to the dedication of countless volunteers, committed staff, and the unwavering support of our generous community. Founded by local clergy, we remain deeply connected to traditional spiritual and ethical values of providing hospitality to those in need.

Our original shelter in Barre City has undergone many renovations and changes to accommodate unmet needs, as the homelessness crisis has grown steadily over the decades. In 2020, exacerbated by the pandemic, we added 2 shelter facilities and residential support to 60 households, including individuals, children, and families, at the Hilltop Inn. Our street outreach efforts, also founded in 2020, extend to 30-100 individuals throughout the year, offering assistance to those living outdoors and in encampments. 

We opened the Good Sam Welcome Center in the renovated former Twin City motel in Berlin in 2022. This transformative project resulted in a 35-bed trauma-informed emergency shelter, providing a crucial home base for individuals to stabilize, enhance their well-being, and reintegrate into the community. 

Today, our organization exists as a shelter network, serving the largest population of individuals experiencing homelessness in Vermont outside of Chittenden County.

Read a brief history below, written in 1997.


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