Being homeless is probably the worst thing that can happen to anyone and it is not something that you plan in life. Drew Goodall was homeless at a certain period of life after his promising acting career has fallen apart. He was in his twenties when he started his acting career, in the beginning he had roles to play but later on they became scarce and in the end none. He could not afford a roof over his head and had to spend his nights on the cold and freezing London streets.
Fortunately, he got his breakthrough in life and managed to rise from the gutters up into the sky. But, it did not come at once like in the movies he had to strive for it and eventually became a CEO of his own company.
Kindness Lifted Him from the Gutters
“Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” – Mark Twain
He told his story to BBC that was broadcasted by the station for the other people to see it. Drew said that the life on the street was very hard, freezing, cruel and once and in a while being battered by the violent rascals. Drew was pulled from this dark hole thanks to the kindness of a man who passed by him every day. He gave him the idea that he could clean shoes for money and thus start earning some money for food.
Here is what Drew told to BBC stories, quote:
“At least in my experience, being homeless was something that happened to other people. It’s the person you see sleeping outside the tube station. It’s not something that you directly think. This is gonna happen to me. There was a guy who used to walk past quite a lot. He said, ‘There are people who work in the City of London and they clean shoes.’ And he said, ‘Maybe you could do that.’ And I thought, ‘Yeah, you know I could do that.’ I mean it’s some brushes and some polishes and it’s really not expensive to do. “
Drew had to fight for this job also as this was not legal to do it on London streets. He was lucky not to get caught when cleaning the shoes of the people who walked near his sleeping area. In time he got regulars and one of them suggested him to work in his office lobby. So, after no working space Drew finally had his own in a building where he could continue his work. Now, he could work freely without being afraid of being arrested as he could have been arrested for breaking “hawking laws.”
Thanks to his work he started to earn enough money for a roof over his head and decent meals. After many years of hard work he created his own shoe cleaning company named as Sunshine Shoeshine with annual revenue of £250,000. Drew is now a CEO and has his own employees but he never forgot the homeless life and the small gestures of kindness from other people.
A Chance for Other Homeless People
Drew worked really hard to turn his company into a successful one, and nowadays he has several locations around London with many employees on his payroll. What makes his company different from others is that he employs only homeless people offering them a second chance in life. Drew never forgot how it was to be a homeless and wants to offer the same opportunity that he experienced to other people as well.
One of his employees is Alan who suffers from poor mental health and is very grateful for the given chance. Now, he looks upon life in better and different way. Here it is what he stated for BBC stories:
“It has given me a point, a purpose. It has made me feel more confident, it has made me feel more like a person. Having a job and a work history, it has given me a bit of a future which I didn’t really have. Sunshine has given me a work history. They’ve clarified that I am articulate, and with skills and abilities, and that’s what an employer wants to see when they see a C.V.”
Alan found a meaning in his life and that makes him to fight even more in life. The work has brought to him hope and now he wants to achieve even greater things.
Drew does not feel any anger or blame on how other people feel about the homeless. He just considers that it is utterly unfair when we realize that these people struggle and we do not give them the chance to get back on their feet again.
Drew has a comfortable and happy life, but that was achieved all thanks to hard work. He just feels grateful that there are still kind people in the world who helped him at his worst moment in life. Now, he is one of them and helps others in need.
Follow the example of Drew and try to make this world a better place to live in!