An inspiring story of true community spirit in Hamilton.
An antique rail car is being transformed into a learning centre on Wentworth Street North, dedicated to teaching kids and adults how to read and write. It started when community members raised money and bought a train. From there, volunteers donated their time to move the train to its current site and retrofit the inside.
Even the 10,000 books that will fill its shelves were given free of charge.
Once complete, the Literacy Express will offer one-on-one tutor sessions for kids during the evening, and classes for adults during the day.
Bob Bratina, Hamilton Mayor: “Instead of putting up a quonset hut or something like that, put a railway car. I think it’s attracted so much attention and the kids are going to feel very proud, and I think kids in other parts of the city will want a railway car too. But here in a somewhat high-needs area, the kids are going to have something to be proud of.”
Glenn De Caire, Hamilton Police Chief: “We know the impact of education over time, and the challenges that face many people across this city in respect to housing, education, job opportunities, and all of those issues and the Hamilton Police service, we want to point the right direction for kids, keep young people out of the justice system, keep them in the educational process, and give them the opportunity to succeed in life.”
Organizers are hoping to have the Literacy Express open for business this fall.
Editor’s note: An earlier version of the video had Chief De Caire’s name spelled incorrectly. This has been fixed.