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Taxi drivers donate to charities

Helping seniors: David Frost, president of the Bermuda Taxi Association and Michael Tuzo, assistant secretary of the BTA, present Friends of Hospice representatives Reilly Smith and Angela Young with a donation. They are joined by Angel Smith of Rubis, which sponsored the taxi association’s annual golf tournament last month (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

Island taxi drivers have donated cash to charities for the elderly and terminally ill.

The Bermuda Taxi Operators Association picked Age Concern and Friends of Hospice because it was aware its membership was ageing and wanted to donate to organisations that could help them in the future, as well as make a contribution to the broader community.

David Frost, president of the BTOA, said: “Several of our drivers are over 75. Anything that pertains to the betterment of our taxi drivers, we would support.”

Mr Frost added: “I think my drivers are proud of their association and that we are giving back to something that they may benefit from.”

Michael Tuzo, assistant secretary of the BTOA, added: “I think it’s an honour for us. We realise that there are people in need and we are trying to assist in any way we can to help the charities accomplish their goals.”

They were speaking after they handed cheques for $500 to the charities.

The money was raised through the annual taxi association’s golf tournament last month, which was sponsored by fuel firm Rubis.

Angel Smith, of the sales and marketing department at Rubis, said its contribution to the golf tournament was the company’s way of thanking the drivers.

She added: “Taxi drivers are one of our biggest clients at the service stations so we wanted to give back.”

Robin Sidders, Friends of Hospice executive director, said: “We are delighted and grateful to receive this generous donation from the Bermuda taxi association and to have the support of all their wonderful drivers.”

She added: “All donations received by Friends of Hospice go directly towards supporting Agape House and the many programmes and therapeutic services offered to patients and their loved ones, and also towards our Day Hospice Programme and bereavement services.”

Claudette Fleming, executive director of Age Concern, said: “The association has supported us over the years. These funds will be instrumental in day-to-day operations in carrying out vital services for our seniors.”

Mr Frost added that the association was now working on a plan to ensure taxi drivers have health insurance in case of illness.