WARR ACRES, Okla. -- We first met Ashley Jiron a few weeks ago.
Ashley’s the owner of P.B. Jams, a sandwich shop in Warr Acres. Ashley recently noticed someone had been rummaging through the trash, specifically food containers.
She says it broke her heart to know someone was so down on their luck they would be digging through her trash.
So she put a sign on the dumpster and at the front door, telling whomever was eating from her trash that they`re 'a human being, and worth more than a meal from a dumpster.
The sign goes on to say the person is welcome to come in to the sandwich shop for a meal, free of charge.
But that’s not all Ashley has done lately.
She found out Sarah Garrett, a total stranger to Ashley, had hit a rough patch financially.
It looked like Sarah’s son wasn't going to have any presents on his birthday, so Ashley went into action collecting donations and making sure the young birthday boy would have presents to open on his big day.
That's why Sarah nominated Ashley for Pay It Forward.
"I had never met her before, but she took it on her own hands,” said Sarah. “She set up a donation site at her restaurant so people could drop off a card or present or whatever else. Then I learned she's the same person who left the note for the person digging in the dumpster. So I thought somebody has to pay it forward to this woman. She does so much for complete strangers.”
John Hahn of First Fidelity presented Sarah with 400 dollars to pay it forward.
“Thank you for nominating Ashley. It sounds like she has a great heart and on behalf of First Fidelity Bank, I’m honored to give you 400 dollars to pay it forward.”
When we surprised Ashley at her restaurant, tears of gratitude rolled down her cheeks. "You guys are amazing, ” Ashley said. “Why do you have such a heart for people?” I asked.
“Because I’ve been there”, she said. “And somebody helped me, and now it's my turn to do the same."
Ashley has even started her own pay it forward wall in her in restaurant. A way for her customers to pay it forward to those who are hungry and need a meal but can't afford it.
“Our customers come in and prepay for somebody else's meal that can't afford it. Once they donate they come and write a few words of encouragement on these sticky notes and post it on the wall.
When someone comes in they just use one of these as a form of payment. We'll never ask any questions.”
Ashley Jiron. Making a difference for people in need, with warm meals... and a warm heart.