Belgian charities: Operation Thermos is on the road again


In our Belgian charities page we looks at an impressive local association heads for the streets once more to help the needy.

As it does every year, the association Operation Thermos started its season of food distribution to the needy in Brussels on 1 November. This time, a team of volunteer bus drivers from the public transport company STIB was in charge of the preparation of the first meal and the distribution to the more or less 100 people coming every night. For the occasion, they chose a funny-looking bus to transport the food and the volunteers to the Botanique metro station where it takes place: an old bus, a Fiat ‘8860’, one of the first urban autobuses built by Belgian constructor Van Hool back in 1954 – they are now leaders in the field.

It was a way of thanking the public transport company STIB, which is the main partner for the association. It will allocate more than 50 (normal) buses during the year for the transport, and 30 teams of volunteers of the company will organize the cooking and distribution. From November, a complete warm meal is being distributed every evening – the initiative will not end until 30 April. It means the needy will receive every day a soup + a warm dish + dessert + coffee and hot chocolate (the latter is much appreciated). For Christmas Eve, a celebration dinner will be organized in a special location. For New Year’s Eve, it will be party time with different associations in the Botanique metro station.

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