After A Homeless Man Entered A Starbucks Asking For A Cup Of Water, A Fellow Customer Decided To Make His Day

It doesn't cost a penny to just to be kind!

starbucks, customer, homeless @shawny816 / TikTok 

A homeless man entered a Starbucks coffee shop expecting to leave with just a cup of water. Instead, he with left with not only far more to eat and drink, but hopefully a new perspective on humanity. 

A customer behind him recognized his struggles and decided to make the man’s day. 

A fellow customer bought the homeless man a coffee and breakfast after he originally asked for a cup of water. 

As Shawn (@shawny816 on TikTok) was waiting in line in a Starbucks shop, he noticed a homeless man approach the counter to ask the baristas for a cup of water to alleviate his thirst. 


“This starving homeless guy came into Starbucks to ask for free water,” Shawn wrote in the text overlay of a TikTok video that has garnered nearly 4 million likes. “What he didn’t realize was I was behind him.” 



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Seeing that the homeless man was clearly not only thirsty but also hungry, Shawn offered to buy him another drink and food.

“My friend, what do you want? I’ll pay for it,” he said to the man. Initially, the man politely declined Shawn’s request, insisting that he only wanted water. However, once Shawn persuaded him and assured him that he would buy him whatever he wants, the man decided to order a large iced coffee. 

“Get something to eat too, my friend,” he encouraged. The man carefully looked at the bakery display case before ordering a breakfast sandwich.

The man smiled gratefully at Shawn and the two shared a fist bump.

“We are all there at one point,” Shawn assured the man. “I’m so glad you’re happy, God Bless you,” he added. 


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People were touched by Shawn’s generosity toward the man. 

“This made my day, he was so happy. We need more kindness like this in the world,” one TikTok user commented. 

“Look at his face!! He was appreciative and humble to only ask for coffee at first,” another user noted. “This is what humanity, compassion, and love in your heart look like.” 

“This man probably felt ashamed for even just asking for water, and now he’s got the biggest smile knowing there are good people out there who don’t judge,” another user wrote. 


Coincidentally, Starbucks began training outreach workers in 2020 to assist homeless individuals who came into the stores, and the program is active in eight U.S. cities. Many homeless people viewed the coffee shops as a refuge and preferred to spend their time at their local Starbucks as opposed to homeless shelters. 

As of January 2023, homeless outreach programs at Starbucks are active in 125 stores across the nation and have led to more than 4,000 homeless individuals' enrollment in a “stabilizing program” which can include transitional housing, mental health resources, or case management, per a company spokesperson to Mother Jones.

Of course, Starbucks customers can help homeless individuals like Shawn did by offering to purchase them a coffee and a meal. It will only cost a few dollars, and extending kindness does not cost a dime! 


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Megan Quinn is a writer at YourTango who covers entertainment and news, self, love, and relationships.