The Good Samaritan behind buying numerous hotel rooms for the homeless to stay in during Chicago’s bitter Polar Vortex has finally been revealed. And it’s an amazing and generous Black woman!
The Chicago Tribune reported that Candice Payne, 34, and her husband would drive past a homeless tent camp on the south side under the Dan Ryan expressway often, but when the temperature dropped to record lows earlier this week, they worried what would happen to the city’s displaced residents.
“We wanted to get as much of them out of there as possible,” Payne told the Chicago Tribune.
Initially, the couple and some friends drove by the homeless camp Tuesday night and persuaded as many as they could to the Amber Inn at 39th Street and Michigan Avenue, renting 20 rooms at about $70 a piece on her Amex card, the Tribune reported.
Payne admitted that the Amber was the only place that would take the homeless in.
Afterwards, she posted on social media that she needed donations to get even more people off the streets. That’s when the money came flooding in.
“Maybe they didn’t know how to or where to start to help, so I’m glad that I was able to be that vehicle,” Payne, who works in real estate, told CBS 2 Chicago News.
By Thursday night, with the help of numerous volunteers—including complete strangers—and the Paynes, they had a whopping 60 rooms for four nights, enough for about 120 people.
“I also have a real estate brokerage, so some of the agents came out to help,” Candice said. “They cooked for the homeless, helping serving them.”
Two men who benefitted from Payne’s generosity, thanked Payne for the generous donation. Jermaine and Robert told CBS Chicago that Candice is “their angel.”
“We don’t get that type of help,” Jermaine said. “I really needed them at that point, so they came right in time.”
“We hear about that on the news and other places but I seen it up close and personal today, and I really want to thank y’all for looking out for our people,” Robert added.
I don’t know about you, but this act of kindness is exactly the story I needed to read today.
Bless you Candice for showing us that humanity isn’t dead.