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Society news

Events, milestones and celebrations occur every day within the Good Samaritan Society. Here, you can read
all corporate news, Society news, center news or center news highlights.

Center news highlights

Feb 26, 2015

There is no place like home. From the comfort of her own living room, Violet Benecke works with physical therapist Alana Gavin. A short stay at Good Samaritan Society – Waukon made it possible for Violet to return home after time in the hospital.


Therapy services get Violet Benecke home in just 12 days


Violet Benecke

(Waukon, Iowa) – In January, Violet Benecke had the flu. She fell twice at home, and was hospitalized for two weeks to recover. When Violet was discharged from the hospital, she needed to regain strength and balance before she could safely return home. She moved to Good Samaritan Society – Waukon so that physical therapists could help her.


“Everyone was so friendly,” says Violet. “I was treated like a queen – I soaked in the hot tub and got my hair done. It was wonderful.”


Last year, 61 percent of the people admitted to Good Samaritan Society – Waukon were able to return home.


The Good Samaritan Society – Waukon offers physical, occupational and speech therapy. Some patients come directly from the hospital; others come from home. Some already live at the center and need extra help maintaining their strength. For whatever reason patients come to the care center for therapy, the center’s goal is to help them regain strength, live as independently as possible, and return home.

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Center news highlights

Feb 25, 2015

Visitors enjoy watching toy trains pass by at Good Samaritan Society - Sioux Falls Village.
Resident Mary Gertrude Loper loved the display. "I think you should keep a little bit of your childhood," she says.


(Sioux Falls, South Dakota) -



Mary Gertrude Loper: They came and they said they had an exhibit of trains, and I said, “Well, I never want to miss anything, and I can always lay the book down," so I laid my book down and I came.




Mary: I didn’t know they miniaturized them so. That’s what fascinated me. They’ve miniaturized them, yet they’ve got it down pat.




Jim: I’m Jim Krekelberg. I work at National Campus. I’m the vice president and controller of the Society. Our club was invited here today. Took an opportunity to come here to the Village to share model railroad history and our hobby with the residents here. Many of them enjoy the hobby; they grew up with trains and are sharing stories about trains.


Mary: All these things are gone now. All the tracks are torn up where I grew up. I grew up in a very small town, and the post office was of course right by the track, and they’d drop the mail on a post, you know … didn’t even slow down.


Jim: This is my personal display that bring to events here. It's just a portable layout that were able to do switching. Were able to drop cars and pick up loads. Kids just love to run it. We have them sign a little book, and they just have fun running the train and backing up, picking up cars, and dropping off cars.


Mary: I don’t think you should ever let your mind get old. I think you should keep a little bit of your childhood. You can’t have any fun without a little bit of your childhood.


Package by Lonnie Nichols

Chief Storyteller/Senior Audiovisual Consultant

Corporate news

Feb 25, 2015


By Courtney Hughbanks

Staff member, Good Samaritan Society – Kearney


(Sioux Falls, South Dakota) – As we pulled away from Bogota on Monday, the bustling city gradually spread out more. We began seeing more people walking, rough-looking structures, dogs roaming alongside the road, and garbage bags stacked high at nearly every corner.


Soacha is considered a level 1 city in Bogota’s 1-7 district rating, where 1 is severe poverty and 7 is affluence. It is situated on top of the mountains on the south side of Bogota. The view is spectacular; the 1.5 million residents of Soacha are able to see the vast city below them, including the freeways on the west and the skyscrapers on the east. However, they are a world away, and every day is a struggle for survival and comfort on the steep streets of Soacha.


Soacha, Colombia, experiences extreme poverty, and is home to 1.5 million people.


Yet, we were immediately flooded with happiness when the seniors greeted us at the door of the senior center and soup kitchen. Kisses, or besos, were shared between everyone, and after a brief introduction, we were ready to get to work.

Click here to read about the team's first day in Soacha.


On Tuesday, we again were welcomed into more seniors’ homes, and they were anxious to gather and converse with us.

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Corporate news

Feb 24, 2015

Retirement can mean freedom from the responsibilities of yard work, cooking and home repairs. But it might also include the desire to explore a new city. A warmer climate. New hobbies.

Here are five great retirement communities that might be just right for you.

1. Las Cruces, New Mexico

Population: 101,324

Great for people who love: Arts and culture

Settle down in what the AARP called a “dream town to retire.” Though Las Cruces offers all of the amenities of a big city, it quiets in the evenings to a small-town feel. Walk down the street and people will say hello.

Las Cruces is a retirement haven for people who love the arts, cultures and religion. Residents at our retirement campus celebrate music, painting, photography, writing, poetry, dancing and theater. The local University offers many ways to explore the arts, too.

Since southern New Mexico is a melting pot and celebration of many cultures, you will always have a fun festival and tradition to take part in.

Las Cruces also is a world-class place to eat. Two local favorites are La Posta, a historic restaurant that reflects the bright Hispanic culture, and Si Bistro, an Italian restaurant and bakery in an old house.




Study says health and emotional preparation are keys to happy retirement.

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Corporate news

Feb 24, 2015


(Sioux Falls, South Dakota) – Good Samaritan Society staff members spent Monday helping repair homes for seniors in Soacha, Colombia.


Click here to learn more about the Society’s 2015 mission trip to Bogota, Colombia.


Adelina and her daughter, Maria, live together.

The team met Adelina, an 82-year-old woman who moved to Soacha to purchase land and build a home. Though the home is just 20 feet by 20 feet, it has two bedrooms, a kitchen and a bathroom.


The team helped put a new roof on Adelina’s home, which had been vandalized by neighborhood children.


“Turns out the American dream to own a home is the same whether you are North or South American,” says Marcella Prokop, a communications coordinator for the Good Samaritan Society.



The second day in Soacha involved birthdays and dancing. Click here to see the fun.

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