Seniors, adults with disabilities
Transport service to expand
A federal grant and a successful fundraising effort have resulted in expanded transportation options for Canal Winchester-area senior citizens and adults with disabilities.
Canal Winchester Human Services received a federal transportation grant of about $40,000 through the Ohio Department of Transportation, Human Services Administrator Penny Miller said.
"This was an 80-20 grant, meaning we had to raise 20 percent on our own through private funds," she said. "The new van we bought was about $50,000 so we had to come up with $9,500 in private donations, much of which came from the seniors using the transportation."
Human Services also received $28,000 through a Freedom From Disability federal grant, which will be used to expand the current program to cover adults with disabilities, not just area senior citizens.
"Our senior transportation program has been around now since the late 1990s," Miller said. "Our current transport bus is from 2006 so it has a few more years of service left; the new bus will be in addition to it. We're adding new people all the time.
"Three years ago, we had about 150 seniors on our transportation list and now there's about 220, so we expect that to expand, especially now that we have funding to help the adults with disabilities."
The program is designed to provide people with transportation to medical appointments and do local personal errands. The service is available to residents older than 60, or to adults with disabilities. According to Miller, Human Services provides the vehicles, the city provides bus drivers and staff to handle scheduling, and Madison Township provides the gasoline.
"The program really works because of these partnerships," she said. "Because of the grants and these partnerships, we're able to provide this much-needed free transportation."
Residents interested in using the transportation services can go online to www.cwhumanservices.org. Forms are available to fill out so they can be placed into the schedule.
Residents can also call the Canal Winchester Community Center at 837-8276 for more information and to request that the forms be mailed to them.
"This is a big deal for us, so I'm very excited," Miller said. "We're very excited to be able to serve even more senior citizens and our disabled adults."