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DANVILLE — Each day, First Student Inc. transports roughly 4,000 Danville students to and from school each day.

Recently, the transportation company gave them another boost.

Earlier this week, Nick Sorey, the location manager in Danville, told school officials that his company donated $5,000 to the Danville Public School Foundation to help needy students and their families.

“It’s just another way to give back to the community and help in whatever way we can,” Sorey said.

Sorey said the gesture originated with Paul Osland, who became First Student’s president in September. When Sorey took over the local operation earlier this year, Osland — then interim president of the Cincinnati-based company — and a couple of other managers paid a visit to Danville.

When they met with Superintendent Alicia Geddis and Assistant Superintendent of Elementary Education John Hart, who oversees transportation, they learned about some of the economic struggles local students and their families face.

For example, “no money to pay a utility bill, food, a pair of badly needed glasses,” Hart said. “Last winter, on the day everyone was leaving for winter break ... I got a call from our homeless coordinator. It was freezing outside, and a family didn’t have any power.

“Oftentimes, they’ve exhausted their resources,” he continued. “We try to coordinate with community agencies to get them some help. Sometimes, we just dig into our own pockets to help.

“I think they were touched by that, and they wanted to do something to help,” Hart said, adding school officials were, in turn, touched by the company’s kindness.

Hart said school officials have already earmarked a couple hundred dollars to help a family with this month’s rent.

“We’re so appreciative,” he said, adding “it always seems to come through when there’s a need. ... We can’t help with everything. But this will help some students and families who have no where else to turn.”

Reporter

Noelle McGee is a Danville-based reporter at The News-Gazette. Her email is nmcgee@news-gazette.com, and you can follow her on Twitter (@n_mcgee).