March 27, 2011 06:57 PM by Veronica Dudo
Secret Millionaire: on ABC is a new reality series, where six of America’s most successful business people will spend a week in the country’s poorest areas, ending their stay by giving members of the community hundreds of thousands of dollars of their own money. This week’s millionaire, John Ferber goes to Los Angeles. Keep reading to find out what happened in tonight’s episode.
America was introduced to John Ferber who was born in Baltimore and now resides in South Florida. He along with his brother Scott, co-founded Advertising.com, which was acquired by Times Warner in 2004. The website is one of the world’s largest interactive Marketing Services Companies.
In 2007, the entrepreneur turned his attention toward philanthropy, specifically investigating new cutting edge ways to help those in need by using the Internet. He came up with Microgiving.com, which allows people the platform to use “their passions, projects, talents, ideas or dream into something that helps others.”
John traveled to Los Angeles–known as the homeless capitol of the county–in search of people making a difference in the lives of those in need. Up to 15,000 people call a section of Los Angeles, Skid Row home. It’s averaged that one homeless person dies everyday in Los Angeles.
John visits The Alexandria House, a shelter that houses women and children mostly homeless due to domestic abuse. He is very touched by the women’s stories. The founder Judy explains to John that the organization doesn’t have the funding to accept any more families. While John was visiting Judy, she received ten phone calls of women looking for a place to stay and she had to turn them away because she didn’t have any room. John starts to wonder about those women and where they will stay and he says his experience is emotionally draining.
John visits the 3 on 3 Street Ball League, a place started for kids to go and play basketball to get off the street. He sees the true need for the organization and how it makes so many happy.
John meets Amin who tries to help the homeless on his spare time. Amin and his family once lived out of his trailor for a while and explains to John that there were some nights that were so extremley cold that all he could think about were those that were actually living on the street. Amin makes bags for the homeless and tries to help in any way possible. While he and John were making a drop-off, an elderly man needed shoes and Amin took off his shoes and gave them to the man. John was very touched. Amin said that he would like to start a non-profit.
It’s John’s last day and it’s time for him to reveal his true identity and gift money to those he believes need it the most. John presents Amin with a 25,000 dollar check and Amin is so happy that he can now do more for others. Then, John gives the 3 on 3 Street Ball League a check for 25,000 dollars and the group is elated. John also saw a mural that had been very special to the community but now has graffiti all over it. John tells them that he sees how important it is to the community and tells them he will pay for the restoration. Last, John gives 5,000 to Judy and tells her to divide the money among the nine families who are currently there. But, he’s not done yet, John also gives Judy a check for 45,000 dollars and brings a minivan packed with toys and computers for the children. The women and kids are so happy and very thankful.
John says he learned a lot from his visit and would like to go back home and contiue to help those in need.
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Photo Credit: ABC