Three hundred Florida A&M University students who are facing homelessness will receive assistance through $15,000 in donations to help.

During the FAMU National Alumni Association Distinguished Awards Banquet, Polk County Alumni Chapter president Doris L. Hicks donated a $10,000 check to assist those FAMU students in need.

Hicks, who donates to the Student Emergency Fund every month, explained she wanted to do more to help FAMU students after encountering men and women experiencing homelessness in her hometown.

“I started raising money after seeing those homeless people,” she said. “I sent letters; I called my friends; I asked everybody I met - people I knew and people I didn’t know. It is important to me.”

Miami-Dade Commissioner Oliver Gilbert also paid it forward, offering $5,000 on top of Hicks’ initial donation.

It was essential to Gilbert, a FAMU Alum who said he experienced his fair share of homeless while attending the university. 

“I slept in my car for a semester,” Gilbert said.

“Donations are greatly appreciated because the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the hardships experienced by students,” said Shawnta Friday-Stroud, Ph.D., vice president for University Advancement, and executive director of the FAMU Foundation.

“We are hearing about more cases of students who are either homeless or near homeless,” Friday-Stroud continued. “This makes a big difference.”

No rattler left behind seems to be the motive behind this giving movement.