When a charity meets a pro-bono opportunity, it’s a win-win situation. That’s exactly the case for Catholic Charities and their partnership with Northern Maine Community College.
It’s not just another day in the classroom for these Northern Maine Community College students. It’s real world, hands on, job related experience.
NMCC Instructor Dennis Dyer says, “They’re backing the docks their hooking up the trailers that are loaded and haul them down the road, it’s great for Catholic Charities and it’s great for our program.”
That it is. Catholic Charities gets a big task done, and the students in the trucking program get the rare, and valuable experience out of it.
Assistant instructor Wayne Fox says, “Some of the students have never driven a commercial vehicle before, so this gives them good experience to hook and un hook and be able to feel a real load.”
Catholic Charities has been partners with NMCC in hauling clothes and items for many years. And it always proves itself valuable for new students to the program, who clearly recognize the win win opportunity.
Student Joseph Pignatiello, “I think it’s very beneficial because they don’t have to spend any money to do this, and they can put their money into better resources or more useful resources just to help the community.”
NMCC provides the tractor, Catholic Charities has the loaded trailer.
Hunger and relief services director, Dixie Shaw, “It’s wonderful because we have 3 trailers that we have dropped off strategically around our work area which is Monticello, Caribou, and Presque Isle. Each thrift store has a trailer.
Dropping off the trailers and bringing them back throughout the locations happens about twice a month. This could be a costly operation for a charity organization.
Shaw, “The fuel costs are so high and it not only would cost the fuel cost involved it would also cost the man hours involved because we don’t have volunteers in trucks there’s certain equipment we can’t have volunteers in.”
Dyer, “We don’t want to take business away from local companies so it’s good for my students, if it’s a charity thing, we’re there to help.”
In a volunteer driven operation, a truck load of items that generate money to feed the hungry in Aroostook County, makes it a 3 way win operation.
Dixie Shaw also adds that the trailers were purchased with grant money for Catholic Charities. The Loring Job Corps in Limestone is also involved with this partnership in providing their trucks for the shipments.