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Olympic speed skater Charles Hamelin serves up breakfast to South Shore students

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Olympic speed skater Charles Hamelin serves up breakfast to South Shore students
WATCH: Olympic speed skater and Sainte-Julie native Charles Hamelin surprised a Montreal south shore school Friday morning serving up breakfast to staff and students alongside a team of volunteers as part of the Breakfast Club of Canada initiative. Global's Brayden Jagger-Haines reports – Oct 7, 2022

Teachers and students at Antoine Brossard highschool have a lot to be thankful for this coming holiday.

Olympic speed skater and Sainte-Julie native, Charles Hamelin surprised the south shore school Friday morning serving up breakfast to staff and students alongside a team of volunteers as part of the Breakfast Club of Canada initiative.

“This program makes sure all the kids that need to eat will have something,” Hamelin said.

“This is giving students the best chance to be successful at school. One of the greatest things I wanted to able to give to kids.”

Working in partnership with the Breakfast Club of Canada the six-time olympic medalist has visited a handful of schools since hanging up the skates in April.

With four gold medals, he is tied for being the most decorated male Olympian in Canadian history, Hamelin brought not only an early meal but also inspiration to the young athletic students of Sport-étude.

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“If I had missed anything for my diet when I was younger I would not be able to be the athlete I am the last couple of years,” Hamelin said.

READ MORE: Olympic athletes surprise local Winnipeg school with new breakfast program

École secondaire Antoine Brossard has offered a daily breakfast program supported by Breakfast Club of Canada since 2020.

Principal Eric Chevalier says more than 200 students use the service every morning.

“The importance is it gives us a moment to interact with students, to say ‘hi’ and welcome them into the school,” Chevalier said.

“It brightens their day and it helps them start the day with a smile on their face too.”

According to the organization, 1 in 3 children risk going to school on an empty stomach.

This year the school received a donation of a brand new electric stove-top for the breakfast program.

Principal Chevalier said the menu will now be expanded thanks to the gift.

“Now we can make grill cheese, eggs and even pancakes,” Chevalier said.

Since the pandemic, food insecurity worsened Hamelin said, resulting in a significant increase in attendance at breakfast programs across Canada since 2020.

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READ MORE: Breakfast Club of Canada sets up emergency fund to feed children who normally get meals at school

Newly elected Liberal MNA for the Lapinière riding , Linda Caron, was also on hand serving breakfast to students, partaking in her first public appearance since the election.

Caron says the experience shows the importance of being out in about the community.

“We need young people to realise their full potential, so this is what I will be working on with the schools to try and get their projects go ahead,” Caron said.

Anyone who wants to donate can go to the Breakfast Club of Canada website.

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