When Dominique Harrison-Bentzen lost her bank card and was unable to pay for a taxi home on December 4, a selfless homeless man known only as “Robbie” stepped in to provide assistance to the 22-year-old college student.
“I suddenly realized that I had no money and a homeless man approached me with his only change of £3,” said Harrison-Bentzen, a student at the University of Central Lancashire in the United Kingdom. “He insisted I took it to pay for a taxi to make sure I got home safe.”
She refused to take the money, and ultimately found a ride home — but the man’s kindness touched Harrison-Bentzen in a way that inspired her to do something to repay the kindness.
“I ended up posting a status on Facebook to try and find him the next day and it turns out I’m not the only person he has helped,” she explained. “Robbie” has apparently assisted others, returning lost wallets and offering his scarf to keep people warm.
Now, it’s Robbie’s turn.
Harrison-Bentzen began raising money to help the kind-hearted homeless man — with astounding success. After locating “Robbie” again, she began to raise money to assist her new friend.
Finding Robbie was difficult, the college student said. “It took me four nights of driving round Preston to find him and I was beginning to lose hope that I would see him again, to thank him personally for his kindness,” she explained. “Luckily I had my mum and her car to help me.”
She doesn’t want to just give him the money, though. Harrison-Bentzen wants to understand what Robbie goes through.
“And I simply can’t just give him the money, I have to go through the right channels so I will be spending 24 hours through the day and night as a homeless person to understand the difficulties they face each day,” she explained. “If people can sponsor me £3 — as Robbie attempted to give me his only £3 — in the hope of collecting enough to get Robbie a flat deposit so that he can be safe and warm.”
And warm he will be! Donations have rolled in, and over £12,740 has been raised to help Robbie. However, Dominique wants people not only to help him — but to take the time to understand the plight of the less fortunate.
“I hope my campaign will help people think a little more about the people around them, Christmas is a good time to think about other people,” she said. “If people can see what I am doing then maybe they can take the time to just stop and talk to a homeless person, hear their story.”