A Canadian woman who won a lifetime supply of money in the lottery is giving away the cash to charity, The Mirror is reporting.
Back in 2013, Rachel LaPierre, a former beauty queen who at the time was working as a nurse, hit it (somewhat) big in the Canada Lottery. Specifically, she won a game whose prize was a guaranteed $1,000 for life. If you’ve done the math, you know that that’s $52,000 per year – not “champagne wishes and caviar dreams” money, but a good chunk nonetheless.
LaPierre, however, didn’t need it. The Quebec woman, 55, had already been managing her own charity when she won the lottery. And now, her weekly lottery check is going to that charity, as well as others that she supports. She’s also given up her nursing career to do more charity work hands-on.
She says that her charitable efforts can take many forms.
“We just try to promote good deeds. Good deeds can be so many things. It can be a bike, it can be food, it can be transport to go to the hospital. It can even be just listening to somebody on the phone because they are lonely.”
One of her charitable efforts, Le Book Humanitaire (“The Humanitarian Portfolio”), provides hot meals to Montreal’s homeless. Other efforts around Montreal, according to Clarin, included helping a family of Syrian refugees find an apartment and helping a homeless mother who’d just had a child.
Other charitable efforts have seen her providing medical care in India and Africa.
LaPierre knows about poverty first-hand. She says she grew up in a “very poor area” and saw “misery and sadness” all around her. By her 20’s, however, she’d started a promising career as a model, and eventually put aside enough money to start a fund to help other young women get into modeling careers. However, when she started a family, she gave it up to focus on a nursing career and on being a mother. She still continued to help out with charitable efforts when she could, however.
“At 20, I loved helping, but I did not know that I would necessarily go in that direction. I learnt everything I could. I realised that giving pleasure made me happy and that doing good deeds fed me.”
LaPierre doesn’t fund her charitable efforts solely by herself, however. Her 22,000 or so social media followers are the major contributors, and Rachel kicks in the rest out of her own pockets.
“Money is money. When you’re born you don’t have anything. And when you go, you go with nothing but your memories. You go with what you did here in life.”