His workaholic ways helped John Ferber become an Internet millionaire. But after the deaths of two of his closest friends, John realized there was more to life than just work. He's leaving his beautiful Florida home to spend a week on the streets of Los Angeles. He'll have to survive on welfare wages amongst the many homeless living on Skid Row. Let's find out more about some of the people he meets as the Secret Millionaire.
Amin is a designer who brings clothing and hygiene kits to those in need on Skid Row. John visits Amin at his West Hollywood hat shop. The backroom is filled with bins used to create the hygiene kits. While assembling some kits, John learns that Amin got kicked out of his house when his family learned he was having a kid. The men bring kits and clothing down to Skid Row. John is amazed that many people only take one item. But he's completely blown away when Amin gives the shoes off his feet to a homeless man using a walker.
John pays a return visit to Amin's shop where he reveals his true identity. He hands over a check for $25,000. Amin is so blown away that he's actually shaking. The two men step outside where John lets him in one more secret. There's a stash of about 200 sleeping bags packed inside a minivan for Amin to distribute. It's rough being homeless on Skid Row, but at least a few folks will now be able to sleep a little better.
3 on 3
3 on 3 is a street basketball league that brings the troubled youth of a neglected neighborhood together. Their motto is "good sportsmanship fosters good citizenship." The league has inspired many to get their lives back on track. A man named Crushow brings John to a skid row mural that was created over 20 years ago by two local artists. The pictures on the wall represent the people in the community. It's inspiring even though it's been greatly vandalized over the years.
John pays a return visit to men at the 3 on 3 park to reveal his true identity. He hands over a check for $25,000. A large chunk of that money will be for a scholarship fund for anyone who needs a hand while trying to make a better life. $5,000 is for the 3 on 3 streetball league so they can get some new equipment. John also wants to pay for the restoration of the mural that will hopefully allow Crushow to paint a picture of hope for the future.
The Alexandria House
40% of the homeless population in L.A. County is families. John visits the Alexandria House, a place that takes in women and children. Judy Vaughan is the founder of the organization. She tells John that the majority of folks come there after suffering through some form of domestic violence. Madison and her little girl came to the house after getting out of a relationship that hurt her emotionally and financially. John was expecting the people he met to be depressed, but Madison and the others are making the most of things with laughter and smiles.
During John's second visit to the Alexandria House, he gets a chance to play with the kids. He meets a mom who bounced from shelter to shelter before making her way to Alexandria House. She's lucky to be there, but the house doesn't have the capabilities to take in many others who also need a safe place to live.
John reveals his true identity to Judy and presents her with a check for $5,000. That money is to be divided amongst the nine ladies living in the house. He then presents another check for $45,000 for Judy to use as she sees fits. Tears flow as Judy gives John a big hug. More hugs come from the families when they learn what's happened. The eyes of all the kids open wide with joy when John pops the trunk of a minivan to reveal a bunch of brand new toys. There are 10 brand new computers in there, too. John says, "If you ever want to feel good about yourself, go help somebody else."