PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — Several local organizations came together to touch hearts and change lives Friday.

Gulf Coast State College and others focused on helping homeless veterans by partnering with Career Source Gulf Coast to host the 15th annual Homeless Veterans Stand Down.

Thirty-four organizations joined together to provide free services for homeless veterans.

“They’re near and dear to our hearts, just like all these organizations, veterans served for our country and we wish to serve them now,” Communications Manager Becky Samarripa said.

Career Source provides priority service of employment programs to homeless veterans.

“It’s important that the Navy takes care of and helps our veterans,” Eric Mitchell, Command Chaplin for Naval support activity said, “Especially if they have fallen on hard times.”

As they come through the door Navy service members were ready with a meal and a friendly conversation.

“Just the interaction, just the fact that we are able to meet with a person and be a blessing to them for one day,” Mitchell said, ” Just making that relationship, establishing that relationship, I think has just been powerful for a lot of the veterans.”

“His organization enhances Veteran’s lives and provides several services for them and their families.” American Legion member Gregg Pennington said, ” we recognize and proved support to homeless Veterans and we have programs within the legion itself, we are made up of a Legion family.”

The legion, the Navy, Career Source, and other organizations helped. They provided counseling, diabetes checks, dental and other help to dozens of veterans before Friday’s event ended.

Organizers said they were able to assist dozens of veterans during Friday’s event. Veterans who missed today’s event but need help can visit The American Legion a U.S. Veterans Association and Career Source for more information.