OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – “When we were homeless it’s terrible just the way people are treated. You know inhuman.”
Amy Rylant of Sayre is talking about the time her family was down and out and needed help. Now they are back on their feet and going back to the homeless camps to help those they know need something special this time of year.
“You don’t get a Christmas gift when you’re homeless,” says Bobby Rylant, Amy’s husband. “That’s one of the things we missed the most, and just to give them something to let ’em know they’re loved. They’re humans too, you know.”
Once they were back on their feet, Amy and Bobby started a program called Stockings of Hope.
Through donations and their own money, Amy and Bobby are hoping to put together 300 stockings this holiday season to hand out to the needy in Oklahoma City and Western Oklahoma.
Their stockings contain socks, gloves, hats, personal hygiene items, some food and other things to help the homeless. Some stockings, as funds allow, even include special thermal blankets to ward off the night chill.
They provide money for hotel rooms too when they can afford it. They also give out lists of resources to give homeless Oklahomans a direction to go to overcome the challenges leaving them on the fringes of society.
Because of all they do, their friend, Alicia McConnell from Edmond, nominated The Rylant’s for Pay It Forward.
“It just brings me hope as well”, Alicia told us. “When they are out doing God’s work and overcome everything that they have been through and giving back to people who need it the most. There’s things that we take for granted on a daily basis and they are bringing hope to the people who need it the most.”
First Fidelity Banks Zach Shirley gave us the $400 Pay It Forward prize money, then we surprised the Rylants with it. Both Amy and Bobby were overwhelmed. With tears in her eyes Amy told us, “It blesses my heart, it makes me happy just knowing that I helped somebody and maybe make somebody feel like they are a little more human.”
Paying it forward to those who need a guiding hand of hope.
Go to gofund.me/fc3fdc38 to donate to the Rylant’s ministry.