Actor Tyrese Gibson was shooting his latest film in Kamloops, Canada earlier this week when he decided to shelter a family of six who are homeless, allowing them to use his three unoccupied hotel rooms.
The Fast & Furious actor video recorded the encounter with the family, starting from the time when he picked them up in his car. He then posted the video on Instagram on Wednesday, explaining why he helped the family and hoping to inspire others to help people in need.
Gibson said he went back to get the family after he had given them food earlier in the day. The family members, who were in disbelief when they noticed the famous star, gladly took the offer.
"I'm not gonna pass this offer up," an unidentified family member said. "To take a hotel room from Tyrese Gibson and company, hell yes."
The 41-year-old actor also recorded the various rooms of the hotel and gave his social media followers a virtual tour, but he didn't show the faces of the family due to safety concerns.
Gibson described his good deed as part of a 30-day selfless act challenge.
"I hope that they come in here and feel blessed, even if it's for one night," Gibson said.
"We have never lived in a world like the world we’re living in now, where some of the most talented, smart, brilliant, educated and capable people are all out of work — losing everything they’ve ever worked for in their lifetimes," Gibson said in the video.
His message also addressed people who may not have much money.
"You may not have the money, but we are all very capable of doing more," the actor said. "If you see someone sleeping outside in the freezing cold, don’t turn a blind eye. Do something. Buy them blankets, give them food, warm water, something. Anything."
Before concluding the video, Gibson challenged the viewers to accept the Selfless Challenge. The clip also advertised the actor's own travel business, VoltronTravel.com, which plans to give away $1,000 for 30 days, according to People.
Homeless shelters in Kamloops have been especially struggling to host the vulnerable population during the pandemic, in conjunction with its normal winter struggles. December daytime weather conditions in Kamloops usually reach -2 degrees celsius (28.4 degrees Fahrenheit), falling to -10 degrees celsius (14 degrees Fahrenheit) at night.
"We can’t really go up to capacity, and so we’ve had to figure out innovative ways to bring people indoors while still maintaining social distancing guidelines," Alfred Achoba, Kamloops operations manager of the Canadian Mental Health Association in Kamloops, told iNFOnews.
Homelessness has also become a growing concern for the region in recent years. According to CBC, the city's data showed 190 people who were homeless in 190, compared to 100 in 2016.
Christa Mullaly, the executive director for the Canadian Mental Health Association in Kamloops, said the number is even higher than what's reported.
"Based on the number of folks that we see at shelter, as well as what we saw at Stewart Wood [emergency shelter] over the winter and the number of individuals we turn away from the shelter daily, we're looking at probably closer to between 400 and 500 people," Mullaly told CBC.