Paying it forward: Florida man helps homeless woman learn how to read

Cropped photo - Greg Smith, Facebook

ORLANDO, FL (WCMH) — A Florida man says he didn’t help a homeless learn to read for the attention, but because it was the right thing to do.

Greg Smith posted on his Facebook page April 26, about his meetings with “Amy Joe”, a homeless woman in the downtown Orlando area.

According to Smith, Amy Joe would never ask for money but would always wish him a good day and offer a smile.

After a few times of seeing Amy Joe, Smith decided to start having lunch with her every Tuesday.

Smith says, “For 30 min to an hour I get to hear how positive she is even though she really has nothing.”

According to Smith, Amy Joe doesn’t smoke, drink or have a drug addiction.

During one of the lunches, Amy Joe informed Smith that she couldn’t read, and would use any money she collected to get books to help her learn to read, instead of buying food.

“This crushed me!!! She would rather learn to read to maybe find a job then eat!!!” Smith posted.

Smith now says he and Amy Joe use the lunches to teach her how to read. He rents one library book a week that they read together during the lunch, and Amy Joe practices on her own the rest of the week.

Near the end of the post, Smith says “This post is in no way to make anyone feel sorry for Amy Joe or brag about me doing something for someone less fortunate. I wanted to share this because maybe this can lead to someone helping another person. There are a lot of people out there like Amy Joe, not all are hungry, homeless, or hurt. Some could be your family or friends. Helping someone could be as easy as saying hello and smiling.”

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