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Tyler Perry paid for every senior's groceries at stores in Atlanta and New Orleans

Imagine going through the grocery store check-out, only to be told that your entire grocery bill had been covered.

That's been the experience of shoppers in Atlanta and New Orleans this week, as comedian and filmmaker Tyler Perry picked up the bill at 73 grocery stores. Many stores have been offering special hours for seniors and other at-risk groups to do their shopping with less potential exposure to the virus, and Perry has given some of these folks a huge gift.


Customers were treated to Perry's generosity at 44 Kroger supermarkets in Perry's hometown of Atlanta, and 29 Winn-Dixies in New Orleans, where Perry was born. People describe the store manager handing out slips of paper with a huge grin on his face as people entered the store. The paper read: "Random act of kindness. Present to cashier before 8 a.m."

Kroger thanked Perry on Twitter for easing the financial burden of more than 3000 customers on Wednesday. "You can see how much this means by the look on their faces," the supermarket chain wrote.

"It was amazing to see their reactions," Winn-Dixie store manager Suzanne Balaylock told WTVY News. "Some people cried, which, of course, I'm very emotional so it made me tear up. Some people were like 'this isn't happening, how can this be this happening, this is just amazing, why would he do this?'"

Perry explained why he did this to Gayle King on CBS This Morning.

"There are a lot of people who are really, really struggling right now, and underprivileged," he said, "and I wanted to go to the heart of where we are and what we need. And this was my way."

This is not Perry's first foray into providing direct financial help to people. He has long been rumored to be a "silent philanthropist" for various causes in addition to multiple accounts of individual assistance for people in need. In 2018, he paid off every outstanding layaway bill for people at two Atlanta-area Walmarts—a gift he tried to keep anonymous without success.

Well done, Mr. Perry. What a great example of how to use wealth in a way that has a direct, positive impact on people.


All images provided by Bombas

We can all be part of the giving movement

True

We all know that small acts of kindness can turn into something big, but does that apply to something as small as a pair of socks?

Yes, it turns out. More than you might think.

A fresh pair of socks is a simple comfort easily taken for granted for most, but for individuals experiencing homelessness—they are a rare commodity. Currently, more than 500,000 people in the U.S. are experiencing homelessness on any given night. Being unstably housed—whether that’s couch surfing, living on the streets, or somewhere in between—often means rarely taking your shoes off, walking for most if not all of the day, and having little access to laundry facilities. And since shelters are not able to provide pre-worn socks due to hygienic reasons, that very basic need is still not met, even if some help is provided. That’s why socks are the #1 most requested clothing item in shelters.

homelessness, bombasSocks are a simple comfort not everyone has access to

When the founders of Bombas, Dave Heath and Randy Goldberg, discovered this problem, they decided to be part of the solution. Using a One Purchased = One Donated business model, Bombas helps provide not only durable, high-quality socks, but also t-shirts and underwear (the top three most requested clothing items in shelters) to those in need nationwide. These meticulously designed donation products include added features intended to offer comfort, quality, and dignity to those experiencing homelessness.

Over the years, Bombas' mission has grown into an enormous movement, with more than 75 million items donated to date and a focus on providing support and visibility to the organizations and people that empower these donations. These are the incredible individuals who are doing the hard work to support those experiencing —or at risk of—homelessness in their communities every day.

Folks like Shirley Raines, creator of Beauty 2 The Streetz. Every Saturday, Raines and her team help those experiencing homelessness on Skid Row in Los Angeles “feel human” with free makeovers, haircuts, food, gift bags and (thanks to Bombas) fresh socks. 500 pairs, every week.

beauty 2 the streetz, skid row laRaines is out there helping people feel their beautiful best

Or Director of Step Forward David Pinson in Cincinnati, Ohio, who offers Bombas donations to those trying to recover from addiction. Launched in 2009, the Step Forward program encourages participation in community walking/running events in order to build confidence and discipline—two major keys to successful rehabilitation. For each marathon, runners are outfitted with special shirts, shoes—and yes, socks—to help make their goals more achievable.

step forward, helping homelessness, homeless non profitsRunning helps instill a sense of confidence and discipline—two key components of successful recovery

Help even reaches the Front Street Clinic of Juneau, Alaska, where Casey Ploof, APRN, and David Norris, RN give out free healthcare to those experiencing homelessness. Because it rains nearly 200 days a year there, it can be very common for people to get trench foot—a very serious condition that, when left untreated, can require amputation. Casey and Dave can help treat trench foot, but without fresh, clean socks, the condition returns. Luckily, their supply is abundant thanks to Bombas. As Casey shared, “people will walk across town and then walk from the valley just to come here to get more socks.”

step forward clinic, step forward alaska, homelessness alaskaWelcome to wild, beautiful and wet Alaska!

The Bombas Impact Report provides details on Bombas’s mission and is full of similar inspiring stories that show how the biggest acts of kindness can come from even the smallest packages. Since its inception in 2013, the company has built a network of over 3,500 Giving Partners in all 50 states, including shelters, nonprofits and community organizations dedicated to supporting our neighbors who are experiencing- or at risk- of homelessness.

Their success has proven that, yes, a simple pair of socks can be a helping hand, an important conversation starter and a link to humanity.

You can also be a part of the solution. Learn more and find the complete Bombas Impact Report by clicking here.

via UNSW

This article originally appeared on 07.10.21


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