Local business donates $1,000 to help fight homelessness in the Star City

ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - A local business helps tackle homelessness in the Star City.

Blue Ridge Towers presented a $1,000 check to the Help the Homeless at William Fleming High School.

The money helps families in the Roanoke City school system avoid becoming homeless. It pays for expenses including a utility bill or rent to prevent eviction.

A spokesman says as of today nearly 400 students have been identified as homeless. That's about 100 less than at this time last year, but 50 more since winter break.

Anthony Smith, the owner of Blue Ridge Towers, donated the money and says his family sees the issue firsthand.

"My mother is a school teacher at Jackson Middle School and she made me aware of the homelessness program and the magnitude of homelessness that was in the Roanoke City public schools, he said."

Smith says he plans to donate more toward the program in the future.

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