Despite cancer threatening his life, Alex Trebek and his wife Jean donated over half a million dollars recently to help open two shelters for the homeless in Los Angeles.
“I’m not one of those people who thinks that we can’t deal with the homeless near my house because that’s bad. I don’t feel that way,” the Jeopardy! host said to ABC 7 News. “I wish more people would react in a positive way to reaching out and trying to help their fellow member of the community.”
The 79-year-old game show host believes that the homeless should not be judged because of unfortunate circumstances. The Alex and Jean Trebek Community Room is part of the San Fernando Valley’s first “A Bridge Home” facility. It will temporarily hold 25 women and 60 men as they transition to permanent living situations. The Trebeks also donated to Hope of the Valley Rescue Mission for a second shelter opening in 2021, as reported by CBN News.
Though COVID-19 continues to disrupt everyday life for many, the new shelter will help the homeless get back on their feet and “become folks who we know are human beings and can feel that humanity again,” according to Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. The shelters are part of “A Bridge Home” program, started in 2018.
“The goal of ‘A Bridge Home’ was very simple—to put ‘A Bridge Home’ shelter in every one of LA’s 15 council districts and deliver the services they need to save their lives now,” Garcetti said. The Trebeks’ shelter was the 15th to open in North Hollywood.
“We feel it is incumbent upon people like us…to start putting back into the system to help those who are less fortunate because when you do that, you help unify the community, the society,” Trebek said.
As previously reported by Christian Headlines, Trebek has fought stage 4 pancreatic cancer for over a year and repeatedly asked for prayer from his fans. He credits those prayers for the successful shrinking of some of the tumors.
“I’ve got a couple million people out there who have expressed their good thoughts, their positive energy directed towards me and their prayers,” he said. “I told the doctors, this has to be more than just the chemo, and they agreed it could very well be an important part of this.”
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Mikaela Mathews is a freelance writer and editor based in Dallas, TX. She was the editor of a local magazine and a contributing writer for the Galveston Daily News and Spirit Magazine.