"80, ruelle de l'Avenir" - The community inspires the children of Centre-Sud and Hochelaga-Maisonneuve to dream

    MONTREAL, Nov. 22 /CNW Telbec/ - Today saw the launch of "80, ruelle de
l'Avenir", an educational project initiated by the Centre-Sud and
Hochelaga-Maisonneuve community. The project will transform an annex of
Garneau elementary school, located on Papineau in Montréal, into a unique and
stimulating learning centre for young people from one of the most
disadvantaged districts in Montréal. About 300 children from Garneau school,
as well as 60 organizations from the neighbourhood, were present at the
    "This initiative, unique in Québec, rallies people from the business
world and the local community around a project that aims to inspire children
to dream. We want to make "80, ruelle de l'Avenir" a special, custom-designed
place, accessible year-round, where young people can give free rein to their
creativity as well as invent themselves," explained Sophie Brochu, Chief
Executive Officer of Gaz Métro, an important partner in the project.
    In concrete terms, "80, ruelle de l'Avenir" consists of converting an
annex of Garneau school into six thematic workshops, including a
kitchen/laboratory, a botanical room, a multimedia centre, a science workshop,
a dance studio and a lounge. The workshops will be located on each site of a
central corridor, designed as a ruelle.
    A "Place de l'Avenir" will be created on the roof and will welcome
children and their parents into a garden with plants, flowers and culinary
herbs. The school gym will be totally renovated to accommodate new physical
and sports activities for young people, as well as events of a cultural or
artistic nature. The project also envisages renovating and "greening" the
schoolyard to make it suitable for recreation and family get-togethers.
    The project's originator is Projet 80, a community organization that has
been working with young people from the Centre-Sud and Hochelaga-Maisonneuve
districts for 30 years in a fight against school dropout. "We supply hundreds
of meals every day to young people from the neighbourhood, realizing that it
is much easier to learn with a full tummy. Once that is done, we need to offer
them the tools that will help them fulfill their potential and find their way
in life. Ruelle de l'Avenir is the way out of the impasse," added Daniel
Paquin, General Manager of Projet 80.
    This ambitious project could not have got off the ground without the
close collaboration of the Commission scolaire de Montréal (CSDM) and Garneau
elementary school. From the outset, these institutions have participated in
every step in the design of the project. Their openness and support have
enabled the project to grow in scale to what it is today, while leaving a key
role to be played by partners from the district.
    "As a result of wonderful collaboration between the CDSM and several
partners from the neighbourhood, "80, ruelle de l'Avenir" will create a
stimulating learning environment for our students, who will have the
opportunity to take full advantage it all. Everything will be done to arouse
their imagination and encourage their success, in a spirit of cooperation and
sustainable development. These values fit perfectly with those of our school
board," underscored Diane de Courcy, Chair of the CDSM.
    Several partners have already agreed to support the project by
volunteering their expertise, along with human and material resources. In
particular, we note the commitment of the following organizations:

       - Académie culinaire (workshop)
       - Avantages services financiers (financing)
       - BMO (financing)
       - Construction Marathon (construction)
       - Construction Albert Jean (construction)
       - Dr. Julien and his team (programs)
       - Groupe Chagnon (construction)
       - G Société Conseil (consultant)
       - HKDP (event organization)
       - Jean Beaulieu, Artiste-verrier (workshop)
       - Nolin Branding & Design (graphism)
       - NFOE (plans for the schoolyard)
       - Olymel (programs)
       - Osler (consultant)
       - Rayside Architecte (plans)
       - Restaurant Au Petit Extra (workshop)
       - Sentier urbain (workshop)
       - SNC-Lavalin (construction)
       - Société Radio-Canada (materials and workshop)

    Project Information:

    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available on
    the CNW Photo Network and archived at http://photos.newswire.ca.
    Additional archived images are also available on the CNW Photo Archive
    website at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited
    members of the media/

For further information:

For further information: Andrée-Anne Pelletier, HKDP Communications and
Public Affairs, (514) 395-0375, ext.231, (514) 248-7844,
aapelletier@hkdp.qc.ca; Sources: Frédéric Krikorian, Gaz Métro, (514)
598-3449; Michel Trottier, CSDM, (514) 596-6000 #6768; Daniel Paquin, Projet
80, (514) 525-4233

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