Dec 5, 2016, 15:15 PM

First Student "Santa" Brings Joy to the Neediest Kids of All

The holiday season brings out the best in all of us. But for this First Student driver, delivering items to benefit a great cause takes on a whole new meaning of playing “Santa”.

For the past six years, Pauline Gaudette, from our Freetown location in Massachussetts, has participated in The Salvation Army’s Neediest Families Christmas Fund event by picking up donated items from the event coordinator’s home early Sunday morning and transporting them to the event venue.Christmas Fund programpic

Now in its 95th year, the event brings businesses, elected officials and residents together to enjoy an all-day prize raffle event to benefit underprivileged children and families in the New Bedford area. 

Money raised helps families by providing them with warm clothes, a good meal, and gifts for the holiday season.

“I love being a part of this wonderful, worthwhile cause every year,” said Pauline. “This event brings out so many people in our community and gives struggling families a chance to have a brighter Christmas.”

For the second year, Pauline recruited her #12692 Location Manager Ken Rezendes and driver Jane Jacques to also help at the event. Ken will be at the hotel’s loading dock when Pauline and Jane arrive to unload two busloads of items and deliver them to the ballroom where volunteers will assemble gift baskets for the all-day raffle.

“Pauline has a heart of gold,” said Ken. “She has been driving a bus for the past 33 years. Her professionalism and safety record are impeachable. She truly cares about her passengers and is very devoted to her job. She’s the kind of driver every parent dreams of having for their child.”

Support for this project, as well as other community engagement projects, is supported by Area General Manager Dave Collins.  He understands that community engagement is critical in strengthening external relationships within our local communities.

Pauline, Ken, Jane, and Dave embody our FirstGroup values for taking time during this busy holiday season to give back to the Greater New Bedford community and for strengthening external relationships. Thank you for your commitment to our customers and setting the highest standards.