Difference Maker paying it forward by helping the homeless every month

Doris Martinez came to Texas as a child from Puerto Rico. Her brother needed kidney surgery and Doris' mother was advised to go to Dallas for the surgery.

With about $20 in her pocket, Doris' mother came to Texas to start a new life. The family lived in a church for two weeks until they scraped enough money to get a place to stay.

"Just going through that, not having a place to live, not being able to speak the English language, that stuck with me throughout the years," Doris said.

It's those memories from her childhood that prompted her to create Helping Hands for the Homeless, a non-profit that provides hot meals, snacks, water and clothing to about 200 homeless people every month.

"My experiences as a child is what got me to always want to give back because I know there were people there to help us get our life started in Texas when we didn't know anyone," Doris said.

The group launched, gathering supplies and making food on their own until they created a non-profit that gathers every month.

"Every month we do something different so this month, we'll be giving hot meals and about 200 sleeping bags and fleece blankets to the individuals," Doris said.

They've met every month since September of 2016 and now Doris wants to help even more.

"My ultimate goal is to try to raise funds to be able to buy a six to eight stall shower trailer that way we'll be able to provide them with hot water for them to be able to take showers," Doris said.

Helping Hands for the Homeless has started a Go Fund Me page to raise money for the showers on wheels. ​

We're proud to call Doris Martinez and Helping Hands for the Homeless this weeks KRLD Difference Makers.

If you know someone making a difference in the community, send us an email at differencemakers@krld.com.