WHO WE ARE
Good Samaritan Ministries/Atlanta was founded as a non-profit ministry in 2005 by Dr. Richard W. Douglas. Richard’s childhood was chaotic. His parents divorced when he was two because his father was a violent alcoholic. He was sent to live with his aunt and uncle and raised by them. The pain of rejection by his parents drove Richard to medicate the pain with alcohol & drugs and pursue a destructive lifestyle. His sister also became an alcoholic and died from liver failure due to her alcoholism. In 1980, God delivered Richard from a fifteen-year addiction to alcohol & drugs. After his deliverance, God worked in Richard’s life to restore the family relationships that were so badly damaged. As a result, Richard was able to pray with his mother, sister, aunt and uncle to receive Christ before they died. Because of what God did to deliver Richard and restore his family, Richard has a heart for those who are still in bondage to alcohol and drugs, especially those in prison.
The purpose of GSM is to help those in prison and after release to be set free from the influence of alcohol and drug addiction, to achieve healing and wholeness, and become productive members of society.
Why are we focusing on people in prison? Because this is a serious problem. The recidivism rate or the rate that people wind up back in prison is over 50%.
The consequence of this is:
Georgia has the 6th largest prison system in the USA.
There are 54,000 people in prison in Georgia.
There are 211,000 people in Georgia under court supervision i.e., probation, house arrest, etc. 350 people a week are released from prison in Georgia.
Georgia is one of only three states that do not pay any wages to prisoners for their work, so can’t save any money to get a fresh start when they get out.
It costs taxpayers approximately $17,000 per year to clothe, feed and house each prisoner.
Therefore, most inmates have no job waiting for them; no prospects, no family support, very little money to find a place to live and buy food and start a new life.