MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - The Camp Meridale project started as a mere vision for Ty Ford. The author and pastor had ideas of bringing a positive impact to his hometown, but Ford had to complete an uphill battle of his own.
"I was in ten plus years of drug addiction and I just got fed up one night. I raised my hands up in the sky. I was in my bed strung out on drugs and I said, Jesus, take the reigns of my life. Even if I have to go to jail or whatever it takes, so be it," said Ford.
Ford and his wife, Hillary, fought demons of addiction before finding their way to Fourth Day Ministries. The two became invested by sharing their testimony and reaching back to help their community in any way possible.
"I wanted to learn who I was, what He had for me, and just figure out this thing called life," said Ford.
Soon after, they were given the opportunity to expand their mission after a generous donation by the Joe Meyer family. Forty-four acres of campground was donated to the religious organization and the two began an extensive renovation process.
The camp will feature camping, fishing, outdoor sports and wide-range of other activities. Dozens of groups have had the chance to already see what the site has to offer.
"And it's already happening now, but I want it to happen to a greater capacity because I know with Him, with God on our side, we're able because He lives inside of us," said Hillary Ford.
The group has invested about $300,000 in renovations so far. Part of that money includes purchasing an additional 126 acres of land on the property, totaling 170 acres. The biggest concern moving forward is the source for additional funding.
"We have to pace with the dollar as it comes in. But, I think once things kick up and once things do, we'll be able to really get a lot done really fast and this place is going to take off," said Ty Ford.
It's a vision Ford hopes to bring to fruition.
"Just having the property started with a vision, and God was able to provide this so, who's to say He won't do that too? You know?” asked Ty Ford.
To make donations to the Camp Meridale project, visit the website by clicking the attached link.