Who They Are

Located in San Mateo County, California, Samaritan House San Mateo provides services and resources to low-income and homeless San Mateo County residents in need, including families with children, seniors and individuals living with a disability, veterans and homeless adults.

The Problem

When Samaritan San Mateo approached us, their site was unstable due to the amount of custom code that had been included within the theme of the site. This made the site difficult to manage and grow with the organization. The immediate need was to rebuild the theme using as little custom code as possible in order to ensure the site’s stability for regular browsing and edits.

To aid in choosing a solution for rebuilding the theme we needed to meet the following requirements:

  • Improved flexibility on how content is displayed
  • Improved ability for editing the header and footer
  • Ensuring that the site could still support multiple languages
  • Ensuring the site became user friendly for both admin staff and remained easy to use for external users
  • Ensuring we maintained and improved the accessibility of the site

The Solution

In order to support the flexibility needed for changing how content is displayed, along with the ease of use needed for editing, we decided on using a combination of Elementor and Crocoblock to build the site. We created templates for the different areas of the site using custom post types in Crocoblock. This allows for keeping the basic structure of the same page types consistent, while allowing for flexibility with organization of the remaining page content.

Elementor also allowed us to rebuild both the menu and footer in a way that makes it quick and easy for Samaritan House admin staff to make changes as needed. 

During the rebuild of the theme, we looked at accessibility and found that while they had a good start on accessibility, a few items could be improved straightaway. These items include contrast on links, alt-text, and removing images that had text over them by creating new image fields that allowed for Text to be overlaid. This allows for those using screen readers to have access to that text content. Post-launch of the rebuilt site we are continuing to make accessibility improvements.

We are continuing to work with the Samaritan House San Mateo on continued improvements to the new site throughout 2024. We look forward to seeing the impact of these improvements on their website and community.