Leadership Bay County donates equipment for park at Good Samarit - WNEM TV 5

Leadership Bay County donates equipment for park at Good Samaritan Rescue Mission

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Craig Laszlo, director of operations at Good Samaritan Rescue Mission, said he can't imagine what most of the families are going through, who are helped at Good Samaritan Rescue Mission.

The newest addition to the mission is a large park in the courtyard, recently renovated to give those who need shelter a place that feels like home.

“For those in those situations, to have a place like this not only for the children but for the parent, it may get their mind off their situation,” Laszlo said.

Leadership Bay County donated and updated Stephanie's Play Haven, the park at the shelter.

The new equipment, flowers, a walkway and more now lives up to the legacy the park is named after.

“Stephanie Meilans was a high schooler who died tragically in a car accident. She had a heart to help those in need specifically for the homeless for her community,” Laszlo said.

Many may think there is not a huge demand for a shelter in the Bay region, but according to Laszlo, the community does need a place like this.

“It wasn't that long ago that people were convinced there wasn't a homeless problem in the area,” Laszlo said. “As we've seen over the last decade are in need of a shelter. Those who are down on their luck as we say, they need that hand up, not a hand out... But a hand up.”

The project began in April, and the finishing touches were completed today.

The slide and swing set are now ready for fun, and soon the shelter could feel more like home.

“It may take the scare out of it if nothing else,” Laszlo said.

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