Holiday commuters help feed needy students

By Robert Frank

Laval commuters dug into their pockets, Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve, to help buy breakfasts for underprivileged children.

“Their generosity was astounding,” said Laval transit authority spokeswoman Marie-Céline Bourgault, of the nearly $9,000 in cash collected aboard city buses during those two nights.

“Société de transport de Laval (STL) offers free fares to whomever wants to take the bus Dec. 24 and 31,” she explained. “The aim is to discourage residents from driving after they have consumed too much alcohol during the festivities—but we invite people instead to donate.”

“The money is given to Centre de bénévolat de Laval, which helps young pupils who don’t have a chance to have breakfast in the morning,” Bourgault told The Suburban. “They provide breakfast each morning at Laval schools to help them start their day out right so that they can concentrate better on their studies.”

The collection was the brainchild of STL’s Boomerang committee, founded in 2002 by transit authority staff.

“The Boomerang committee organizes various employee activities,” Bourgault said. “We donate whatever surplus is left over from conducting those activities to Centre bénévolat de Laval.”

“The money is distributed to English and French schools all over Île Jésus where they know that there are underprivileged children,” she concluded.
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