DETROIT (CBS Detroit)– When you have your own reliable car, transportation — how to get from point A to point B — isn’t high on the list of daily concerns.
When you don’t have a reliable ride, it’s a different story.
To help local kids who may not have access to easy transportation get to safe, healthy places that positively impact their lives, the Sam Bernstein law firm partnered with CBS Eco Media to buy a 15-passenger van for a group called Detroit PAL.
It will be presented at a special ceremony Wednesday attended by Mayor Mike Duggan. Jim Madaus, CBS Detroit’s chief meteorologist, will conduct a special weather report for guests on site.
The donation is meant to help Detroit PAL, a nonprofit organization devoted to local athletic, academic and leadership development programs, in its goal to positively impact the lives of more than 11,000 children a year.
With roots dating back to 1969, Detroit PAL empowers the community by training volunteer coaches and creating safe places for kids to play. Each year, Detroit PAL teaches nearly 1,500 caring community members how to be encouraging and effective mentors. Detroit PAL strives to create positive, energetic, and safe experiences for young people.
“These experiences will help them grow into responsible citizens who appreciate the benefits of an active and healthy lifestyle, and the importance of giving back to the community,” boosters say.
With limited options for public transportation in this area, the van will allow young people a better opportunity to enjoy college tours, once-in-a-lifetime experiences with professional athletes, attendance at professional games and other specialized athletic experiences, supporters say.
Detroit PAL estimates that the van will transport more than 700 children approximately 10,000 miles per year for the next 10 years.
“Detroit PAL is extremely grateful to the Sam Bernstein Law Firm for their generosity in supporting the purchase of a 15 passenger van,” said Tim Richey, CEO of Detroit PAL. “The van, the first new addition in several years to an aging fleet, will allow us to continue to provide safe and reliable transportation for Detroit PAL’s youth for years to come.”
Last year Detroit PAL, with the help of 1,500 trained and certified adult volunteers, introduced local kids to athletic programs include basketball, volleyball, track and field, soccer, baseball, softball, tee ball, lacrosse, golf, contact football and cheerleading.
“Detroit PAL programs give kids in Detroit an opportunity to learn through athletics and develop confidence and motivation that will stay with them when they’re off the playing field,” said Paul Polizzotto, president and founder, CBS EcoMedia. “The Sam Bernstein Law Firm has a long history of public service, and the purchase of this van is a fine example of their commitment to the community.”
Detroit PAL and Ronald McDonald House charities are also contributing funds toward the purchase of the van.