Thousands of books collected for Haiti by Franco-Ontarian Teachers' book

OTTAWA, May 13 /CNW Telbec/ - Many volunteers will be busy at work for the next three days sorting and packing the thousands of books collected for Haiti by the Association des enseignantes et des enseignants franco-ontariens (AEFO). The books, presently stored in an unused school in Orléans, will be shipped Monday by container to a school of 1500 students in the city of Gonaives in Haiti.

Part of the shipment, namely teaching resources, will be distributed to some 300 Haitian teachers who will attend a two-week educational training seminar offered in July at the same college by the Canadian organization, Project Teach/Konbit Pwof. A few AEFO members will be participating on a volunteer basis as trainers for this seminar.

AEFO's book drive has been successful beyond all expectations. "We'll have a better idea when we have finished packing but my estimate is about 130,000 books," says volunteer coordinator André Leroux, a retired teacher from Kapuskasing.

Books were sent to Ottawa from all regions of Ontario. In many cases, students and AEFO members donated books from their personal collection or bought new ones. Many French-language school boards also donated textbooks and teaching resources.

"We are overwhelmed by the generosity shown by so many who answered our call, says AEFO president, Benoit Mercier. And we wish to extend our sincere thanks to all those who took personal initiatives to ensure the success of the book drive, our members, our local leaders, school principals, parents, school boards and many students."

AEFO represents 9,500 teachers and education workers in Ontario's French-language elementary and secondary schools, both Catholic and public, and workers in other French-language establishments.

SOURCE Association des enseignantes et des enseignants franco-ontariens (AEFO)

For further information: For further information: Comments: Benoit Mercier, president, (613) 218-8587 (cell.); André Leroux, volunteer coordinator, (613) 864-8713; Contact: Marie-Élisabeth Brunet, Communications Officer, (613) 244-2336, (613) 850-6410 (cell.); Claudia Guidolin, International Affairs Coordinator, (613) 244-2336, (613) 298-0673 (cell.)

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Association des enseignantes et des enseignants franco-ontariens (AEFO)

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