A homeless man has been thrown a lifeline in the form of housing and a support program after he rescued dogs and cats from a burning building.
Down on his luck American Keith Walker won praise and admiration last month when he selflessly entered a blazing animal shelter to save the lives of 16 dogs and cats – including his own dog that was being temporarily housed there.
And now he is being rewarded by a local charity which is giving him a place to live and training in life skills to help him turn his fortunes around.
Atlanta-based organisation, Georgia Works!, is offering help and support to Keith – while a GoFundMe page has also raised over $89,000 (£64,000) to help support him too.
Georgia Works! CEO Darlene Schultz told TMZ: “Keith is slated to enter her program.
“The goal is to make him a self-sufficient person … and that includes teaching him occupational skills and money management.”
Georgia Works! mission statement reads: “To take chronically homeless men and help them overcome their barriers, change them as human beings, making them productive and self sufficient individuals.”
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Those who are helped by the charity are housed at their facility for up to a year “while they participate in transitional work (earning $7.40/hr for 30+ hours per week).”
Their official website adds: “All participants renounce dependency and remain drug and alcohol free. Personal support, case management, and workforce training is offered throughout the program.
“We also provide AA/NA Classes, GED classes, support in obtaining a driver's licenses, help setting up a bank account, and life skill preparation courses.”
So far the charity has helped over 850 men take back control of their lives.
Speaking of his heroics during his animal saving bravery at W-Underdogs shelter last year, Keith told CNN: “I was nervous as hell, I'm not going to lie.
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“I was really scared to go in there with all that smoke. But God put me there to save those animals.”
He added: “If you love a dog, you can love anyone in the world.
“My dog is my best friend, and I wouldn't be here without him, so I knew I had to save all those other dogs."
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