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Area IV's Volunteer Public Transit Program Meets Transportation Needs In Local Communities
Updated July 14, 2017 6:45 AM
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(UNDATED) - Low-income residents of rural communities often lack adequate transportation for errands and social activities. If these residents are also disabled, their isolation increases.

The Volunteer Public Transit Program, offered through Area IV Agency on Aging and Community Action Programs, provides an increased quality of life for low-income passengers and enables increased participation in the communities where they live.

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To provide safe and proper assistance for disabled passengers, the program's transportation coordinator, Stan Minnick (pictured standing in photo at right), offers training opportunities in passenger-assistance techniques to drivers.

In addition, the Indiana Rural Transit Assistance Program partners with Area IV to provide free driver training programs that are relevant, informative and fun!

In 1986, to address a lack of public transportation in its rural areas, Area IV coordinated with community leaders and sought federal and state financial assistance from the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT). Now celebrating more than 30 years of rural public transit service, the program serves the towns of Boswell, Brookston, Clarks Hill, Flora, Hillsboro, Rossville and Waveland.

INDOT still provides annual federal and state support, and Area IV also receives community donations and Community Services Block Grant funds to cover program expenses. To keep program costs low, local oversight, daily scheduling and driving are performed entirely with trained, properly licensed volunteers -- a unique feature in Indiana. Each community has its own local vehicle supported by Area IV Agency for insurance, maintenance, program marketing, volunteer training and technical assistance. Passengers give donations to cover vehicle fuel.

In 2016, Area IV's Volunteer Public Transit Program provided 4,333 one-way passenger trips for 431 unduplicated passengers, traveling 24,136 miles. Service was provided by 91 dedicated, trained volunteer board members and drivers.



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