Salem man provides place to stay, supplies for homeless during c - KPTV - FOX 12

Salem man provides place to stay, supplies for homeless during cold nights

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SALEM, OR (KPTV) -

The owner of a Karate school in Salem is helping out the homeless by turning his building into a warming shelter and on other nights, he delivers food, blankets and other supplies to help keep the homeless stay warm.

After John Olivera is done teaching at his martial arts school, Steel Kickboxing, in Salem, he packs up his truck with things to help the homeless.

"I've been going out about the past seven years, especially the last couple of months."

Olivera drives around the city looking for people who are left out in the cold.

"One of the first places I go to is underneath the bridges."

Olivera says some people who are homeless prefer to sleep outside, so he tries his best to hand out other resources, like food, sleeping bags, blankets, and tents.

He also provides rides to help the homeless get to and from where they need to go.

When asked why he gets out and helps, Olivera simply said how could you not.

"If you have courage to stand up next to homeless person because you're not afraid they might hurt you, which I do, and if you have an open heart, I do because my parents gave me one, and if you have a big Karate school, it's warm. How can I leave my door closed when they're out there being cold?"

Olivera says when he turned his school into a warming shelter around Christmas, about 170 people showed up.

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