Greg Smith of Orlando, Florida, wears a suit to work, so often gets asked for money by the homeless.
One of the people he passes by every morning, a woman called Amy Joe, never asked him for money, but greeted him with “Good morning Sir, have a great day. God Bless!”
Eventually Smith took pity on her and decided to buy her lunch a few times. During one of their lunches, Amy Joe told him that she never learned how to read.
“Amy Joe does not smoke, drink, have a drug addiction, or anything to that nature. She simply just has never had anyone teach her how to read,” Smith wrote on his Facebook page.
Amy Joe told him that it was difficult to find a job while being illiterate, and that she tries to learn herself by reading books from the library, so Smith decided to help her out.
“So now not only do Amy Joe and I sit and have lunch, I’m teaching her to read. I rent one library book a week and we read it together Tuesday and she practices on her own throughout the rest of the week,” Smith wrote.
Smith shared his story on Facebook, which drew such a large response and offers of donations that he decided to start a charity for the homeless, named after Amy Joe. On the first day, April 30, he raised over $1,300 on a GoFundMe page for the organization.
“I want to be able to help anybody, whether it be giving them some food or clothes,” Smith told ABC News. “I don’t want to just narrow it down to helping people read because there’s so many other people that need more help.”