Operator. May I help you?: Bell Canada's 125 Years

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Creative Commons License
Bell operators filled Christmas hampers for distribution to needy families, Montreal, QC, 1932
Millar Studio
1932, 20th century
Bell Canada Historical Collection
This artefact belongs to: © Bell Canada
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Keys to History

Employees' Contribution to the Community

Throughout the 20th century, telephone company employees played a significant role in their communities. They not only provided an essential service, they were also active in the fields of education, health, community development, and the arts and culture. Tens of thousands of current or retired phone company employees performed volunteer work to help improve people's quality of life.

Giving away Christmas hampers; developing devices to enable visually impaired children to take part in various sports; inspecting, refurbishing and distributing computers to schools: these are just a few examples of what volunteers did and still do.

Since its founding, Bell Canada itself has played a philanthropic role by making annual donations to many charitable organizations.

  • What

    The picture shows Bell Canada operators getting ready to distribute Christmas hampers in Montreal.

  • Where

    This event took place in Montreal, where, during the Depression of the 1930s, living conditions worsened because of a lack of work and wage cuts.

  • When

    In the 1930s, especially in winter, needy families in large Canadian cities had to turn to charities for food and heating fuel.

  • Who

    For over a century, thousands of phone company employees and retirees have devoted their time, skill and money to a variety of community causes and projects.