A Dunkin’ Donuts employee is overjoyed after receiving what she believes is a Christmas miracle – a fully furnished home! It’s thanks to the initiative of one kind customer.
Ebony Johnson, 33, is an enthusiastic worker at the fast-food chain’s location in Ohio. When regular drive-thru customer Suzanne Burke—whom Johnson had befriended—noticed that the latter had not worked for a few weeks in March, she became concerned.
Johnson has been employed at the Mount Healthy location for three years, and when she returned to work, Burke reached out to her to make sure everything was fine. Unfortunately, it wasn’t.
Johnson revealed that she had been struggling financially and trying to find housing for her family after being evicted from their home.
“I wanted to give up,” the mom of three told TODAY. “I cried. I come to work every day and nobody knows what I’m going through because I always try to have a smile for our customers.”
Burke, who has done social services work, left her a note offering to help, and Johnson accepted. She immediately got to work and began reaching out to various businesses and organizations.
After nine months in the making, Johnson and her children moved into their new fully furnished apartment in Cincinnati on December 3.
Johnson said the experience was nothing short of amazing, especially since it would be their first time living in such a home.
“I never had a full furnished house,” she said. “I never had help like this. I had been asking God to put us in a home before Christmas, and He really did. I’m just so thankful.”
Burke said it was “so exciting” and that they all cried during the unveiling of the home.
“I’ve got three kids, and I can’t imagine not having a home to go to and then to have to get up, get the kids to school, and show up at work with a positive, happy attitude? I’ve been in awe of her,” she said.
Johnson and her family had not had permanent housing since being evicted in March 2020, so being able to settle into their new place this month has been a long-awaited deal. Before this, they lived with different family members and moved from place to place.
“It’s been so much we’ve been through,” the hardworking mother said. “I just keep going. I think about my kids every day. I can’t give up because then what is going to happen to them?”
When Burke found out last month that Johnson would be getting the apartment, she asked her if she had any furniture. She said she had none, so Burke reached out to Design to Market, a real estate staging company.
The company donated most of the furniture and got the help of New Life Furniture Bank, an organization that provides household items to people in need.
Thanks to these groups, Johnson and her kids moved into the fully furnished two-bedroom apartment without the need to buy stuff. They also enlisted the help of a handyman to fix any issues with the home.
Burke is now working on getting Johnson a car since her new apartment is farther away from Dunkin’. Her oldest son, who is 15 years old, is still living with her brother to be closer to his school.
Johnson is happier than ever to serve customers now that a huge weight has been lifted off her shoulders.
“Last year we didn’t wake up to nothing,” she said. “It was depress and stress. This year is going to be good because we’re in our home. I get to cook in my own kitchen for my kids.”
They are looking forward to spending their first Christmas in fully furnished home they could call their own.
Congratulations on your new home, Johnson family! Watch their heartwarming reaction upon seeing their new home in the video below.
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