I hope this trend of random miracles keeps going for a while because it's completely restoring my faith in humanity. For those of you who are just tuning in, a few weeks ago NFL wide receiver kicked off the miracle season by sending a group of underprivileged Houston kids on an 80 second shopping spree at Toys R Us. Andre picked up the entire tab, to the tune of $16,200. Then about a week later, an anonymous "bubbly older woman" in Massachusetts went down to her local Toys R Us and paid off the store's entire layaway balance, to the tune of $20,000. On Monday, a man in Pennsylvania repeated the layaway miracle at his local Walmart. That anonymous man ended up paying off $50,000 worth of purchases that were being held for struggling families. Today's miracle comes from across the pond in England, and it might be my favorite so far…
Here's how the story goes: Late at night on December 4, a student named Dominique Harrison-Bentzen was trying to take a subway home after a night out in the Northern English city of Preston. There was just one problem. At some point in the night, Dominique had lost her wallet. She had no cash or bank cards. Dominique did not discover this fact until she was already in the Subway attempting to buy a ticket from one of the machines. Understandably, she started to feel a little panicked. Panicked enough that a nearby homeless person noticed and approached her to see what was going on. That's when something incredible happened.
Amazingly, the homeless person offered to give Dominique all the money he had collected that night. It wasn't a lot of money. A few coins that amounted to around £3 pounds (a little under $5 USD). The "homeless hero" insisted she take the money and use it to get home safe.
She didn't end up taking the money. Dominique was able to order an Uber with her phone to take her where she needed to go. But not surprisingly, Dominique was stunned by the generosity offered by this homeless person who clearly had nothing, and was willing to give up his last few coins.
When she got home, she couldn't just let the story end there. And it turned out, this was not the only time this homeless person had been a hero to someone in need. In Dominique's own words:
"I didn't take the money but I was touched by such a kind gesture from a man who faces ignorance every day. So I set on a mission to find this man, the more I spoke about him the more kind gestures I learnt about such as him returning wallets untouched to pedestrians and offering his scarf to keep people warm. I was lucky enough to find him again and his name is Robbie, he has been homeless for 7 months through no fault of his own and needs to get back on his feet but cannot get work due to having no address."
After reconnecting with her hero, Dominique decided to launch an online fundraiser to help raise a little bit of money that might go a long way to changing Robbie's life. Her goal was to find a way to raise a few thousand dollars that Robbie could use as a deposit for a new apartment. The way she was going to raise the money was by spending 24 hours on December 17 living as a homeless person. She emailed everyone she knew and asked people to contribute a minimum £3 pound donation to sponsor her during those 24 hours. Whatever money she raised would go to getting Robbie an apartment.
"Together our small act of kindness can change someone's life this Christmas and finally get him off the streets safe and warm. Please share with your friends and family. Thank you."
Well, apparently Dominique struck some sort chord with her project because just a few hours after the gogetfunding.com page went live, her story went viral. Remember, she had originally hoped to raise a few thousand dollars from a handful of friends and family. As of right now, Dominique has raised $45,168 from 4,527 backers around the world.
But wait, the story gets better. Even though all of the money that has been raised is supposed to help Robbie, he just announced that he does not want the full amount. He is grateful to use whatever money is necessary for him to get an apartment, but amazingly he wants the balance to go towards helping other homeless people! Can you believe this guy? Can we get him to run for office or something? Now you understand why Robbie is quickly becoming known as the "homeless hero".
What a fantastic Christmas miracle. I seriously hope we can keep all these amazing stories every day for the rest of the year! Keep the miracles coming citizens of the world! Big and small!
PS. I was going to link to the gogetfunding page, but the fundraiser just expired so it's not accepting any more donations right now. If it gets extended, or if another fundraiser goes live, I'll update this article with the relevant info!