Lake Erie Transit giving backWritten by Brigitta Burks | News Editor | BBurks@toledofreepress.com
One southeast Michigan public transportation service stresses the importance of giving back to the community this holiday season.
Lake Erie Transit has served Monroe County since 1980 and plans to serve its community several ways this December. “I think a lot of people only picture LET as a public transit system and when you’re in a community the size of Monroe and Frenchtown than you’re more than just a bus system than you’re a part of the local community,” said Mark Jagodzinski, General Manager of LET.
LET will provide seniors citizens with free rides to the Holiday Symphony Band Concert on Dec. 12 at the La-Z-Boy Center, Meyer Theater. The bus system previously took the seniors to look at holiday lights until they requested a change about five years ago. The concert has proved a hit, Jagodzinski said. “It is something they enjoy quite a bit,” he said, adding that LET often receives thank you letters from the seniors.
The buses are equipped to load wheelchairs. Contact your senior facility to see if it’s participating.
Since 2004, the service has also given rides to the children participating in Monroe’s “Shop with a Cop” program. About 20 children are given a budget and a Monroe police officer to shop with at Walmart. On Dec. 21, LET will transport the children to their shopping destination. LET employees also donate to this program. To make a donation to the “Shop with a Cop” program, call Ron Turner at 734-777-0728.
During the week of Dec. 5-10, riders can get a free one-way ride for donating a nonperishable food item when boarding a LET bus. The food is donated to St. Joseph’s Food Closet. Since 1998, LET has donated 22,000 cans to St. Joseph’s.
“It helps stock the shelves right after Thanksgiving when things are a little low for them,” Jagodzinski said.
“The truckload of food they collect makes a huge difference to the families we help,” said Don Jevince of St. Joseph’s in a news release.
LET’s employees are a major reason that the bus system does so much community work, Jagodzinski said. Out of the 60 employees, about 45 are drivers, he said. Much of the work they do with the charity programs is on their own time.
“I know for a fact that they’ve gone out of after work and given money,” Jagodzinski added. “They do it out of the kindness of their heart.”