Everybody is dealing with their own problems, though certain individuals go to extraordinary lengths to hide them. You might never be aware of these issues unless you get right up in their personal space. But at least then you could help.

When this Atlanta mom got pulled over by police, she feared that her life would be ruined. However, authorities later noticed something in the vehicle that proved she was dealing with a truly awful situation — but they feared it was too late to lend a hand.

Even after Ebony Rhodes finished a grueling shift at a discount store, she didn’t have time to rest. The single mom had her four kids all jump in the family Buick, as they had important work to do.

Ranging in age from 12 to 17, Ebony’s kids all had school finals coming up. She wanted nothing but the best for them, so she insisted that they all go to the library to study. However, they never got there.

During the drive over, Ebony’s heart dropped as a set of flashing police lights appeared in her mirror. She pulled her car over, though she knew she was about to be in serious trouble.

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Tears began flowing down Ebony’s face before the officer had a chance to approach her window. When he asked her what was the matter, she admitted that she was driving with an expired license

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That was a serious offense, and the police officer didn’t give any leniency. He arrested Ebony and sent her car to the scrapyard. Little did he know, he was overlooking a key part of the story.

YouTube / Victoria Police

That essential truth didn’t come to light until days later, when authorities inspected the vehicle prior to impounding. There was nothing special about the car itself, but what was inside of it immediately caught their interest.

The trunk and backseat of the car were filled with all kinds of supplies. There was bedding, games, books, and various types of food. That’s when the full picture came into view.

After asking around, the police confirmed the sad truth: Ebony and her four kids were living in that car. The Rhodes family was having a hard enough time, but now their mom was in custody and their shelter was about to be crushed into oblivion.

Word of the incident got around, and the Atlanta police felt terrible about it. The single parents on the force were outraged, as a matter of fact. Fortunately, one man decided to make things right.

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Deputy Chief Jeff Glazier felt particularly torn up about Ebony’s dilemma. Outside of official work hours, he did some reconnaissance into her background. Maybe he could help.

Fox 5 Atlanta

The driving factor behind the Rhodes’ financial woes, it turned out, were a series of medical issues. Ebony’s daughter Danniaja suffered from Lupus, while Ebony herself got frequently sick to the point where she couldn’t work.

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These mounting costs forced the family out of their home. Ebony looked into homeless shelters but couldn’t find any able to accommodate all five of them. She figured keeping them all together in the car was better than splitting up.

GoFundMe

Hearing this moved Jeff in an incredible way. It was clear that Ebony wasn’t at all a criminal, just a good person dealing with a whole lot of bad luck. The Deputy Chief never met her in his life, but he decided to reach out to her.

Over his years on the force, Jeff made a number of connections with various city officials. He told Ebony that he might be able to make a few phone calls and find a shelter that had space for all of them.

Ebony, while intrigued, couldn’t help but be a little bit suspicious. After nearly ruining her life, why would the police suddenly be on her side? Well, Jeff gave an interesting answer.

The Deputy Chief quoted the famed author Maya Angelou. “We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike,” he said. Though he and Ebony were in two very different positions, Jeff knew they shared the same values.

Sadly, Ebony had been turned away from more shelters than she could count. But with Jeff on her side, the Rhodes found five beds at a nearby shelter within days. That was a huge short-term fix, but the Good Samaritan wasn’t done yet.

Reuters / Brian Snyder

Jeff also promoted a GoFundMe page for the family, just to provide a “safety net” while they got back on their feet. They raised tens of thousands of dollars, which resulted in a huge turnaround.

Facebook / City of Atlanta Police Department

Ebony’s hard work, combined with thoughtful contributions, allowed the family to rent an apartment. Now her kids could focus on school again, instead of whether or not it was safe to sleep in a strip mall parking lot.

Strangely enough, Ebony realized that getting pulled over was a sort of blessing in disguise. She saw one act of kindness could turn around an entire life. In some cases, it doesn’t even have to involve money.

A money-free act of kindness benefitted Jose Antonio, who went out of his way to befriend everyone he could in Palma de Mallorca. Over the years, he became a fixture of the Spanish city, though it didn’t help him with his predicament.

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Nicknamed “Josete” by locals, he liked to think of himself as “el espíritu de la plaza” — the spirit of the square. He went out of his way to connect with everyone in his neighborhood, though life was far from kind to him.

Josete worked as an electrician in his younger days, until struggles with depression and mental health derailed his career. Without anyone to support him through these troubled times, he lost everything.

By 2017, the Spaniard reached his mid-50s, though he had the long hair and ragged beard of a much older man. He certainly stood out from the crowd. But was his unkempt appearance holding him back?

One Palma resident named Salva Garcia couldn’t help but notice Josete’s plight. A number of residents tended to brush off the homeless man, but Salva took the time to get to know him a little bit.

Facebook / La Salvajería

The former electrician now sustained himself on a series of small-time jobs, namely parking neighbors’ cars. Of course, he didn’t have a license to do so, which put him at constant risk for arrest.

YouTube / Dr. Filmgood Audiovisual Studio

The parking gig pulled in enough money to keep Josete fed, but again and again, he came up short when looking at apartments. He just couldn’t scrape together the funds to rent a room.

While Salva unfortunately didn’t have the spare cash to get Josete back on his feet, he did suspect that he could help the kindhearted man. Salva explained to Jose that he was one of the best barbers in the city and asked if he wanted a complimentary haircut.

Figuring that a makeover could improve his job prospects, Josete agreed. But he did make one unusual request: he asked Salva to close the shutters in front of his mirror, so that he’d only see his reflection once the transformation was complete.

YouTube / Dr. Filmgood Audiovisual Studio

Though the homeless man had decades of knots and tangles to work through, Salva was a true artist. He tore through the matted hair, and, gradually, a totally new man started to take shape.

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Salva and his assistants uncovered portions of Josete’s face that hadn’t seen sunlight in ages. As the barber pulled out a bottle from a drawer, he revealed that his plan involved more than just trimming the displaced man’s hair.

He dyed Josete’s hair a dark, rich brown! Already looking far younger, one of Salva’s assistants moved on to his bushy eyebrows. The makeover proved a strange sensation for a guy who for so long only worried about where he would sleep that night.

Still, Salva’s magic wasn’t through yet. Knowing that clothes make the man, he supplied Josete with a crisp white shirt, fashionable pants, and a pair of snappy shoes. Suddenly, he looked more like a tech CEO than a vagrant.

YouTube / Dr. Filmgood Audiovisual Studio

After pulling off every trick in the book, Salva could only hope that his friend would approve of the new look. Josete leaned forward in anticipation as the barber uncovered the mirror.

YouTube / Dr. Filmgood Audiovisual Studio

When Josete first set eyes on his new look, he could barely speak. He looked fantastic, like a man who had everything in the world going his way. Josete wondered how the people of Palma would react to the change.

BBC

As Josete strutted his stuff down the city streets, quite a few of his neighbors caught sight of his makeover. They cheered and laughed in disbelief. He smiled and wiped away a few tears.

YouTube / Dr. Filmgood Audiovisual Studio

In certain cases, Josete had to introduce himself to people he saw every day. Paolo Bocardo, for instance, paid him to park her car each day, but she didn’t recognize Josete at all until he approached her.

Dr. Filmgood Audiovisual Studios

That afternoon, the former electrician took his usual place in the town square, but as a new man. He looked like a guy who was about to take the world by storm. One of his old pals even jokingly asked him, “Where’s your Ferrari?”

Daily Mail

A couple of years later, Josete was slowly but surely getting back on his feet. He got his vision fixed and adopted a more “George Clooney” look, which made him feel confident about the future for the first time in decades.

Daily Mail

It truly was an amazing transformation. And all it took, besides a haircut and new outfit, was Salva’s belief in Josete’s potential. Salva knew that, in many cases, the people with the least are willing to give the most to others.

Facebook / La Salvajería

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