The majority of our service area is rural, which means transportation to essential services such as grocery stores and medical appointments is vital for older adults. Several transportation providers offer transportation options in southwestern Minnesota, and an essential element that they rely on is volunteer drivers.
Transportation provided by volunteer drivers is “the lowest cost transportation option available for many people,” according to the United Community Action Partnership website. “In 2018, volunteer drivers in Minnesota provided more than 168,000 rides for older adults and other non-drivers, giving them access to healthcare and other essential community services and products. Organizations with volunteer driver programs served 77,474+ people in 2018 and drivers covered more than 9.5 million miles” (volunteerdrivermn.org/about). Given the distance from Iowa to Canada is approximately 435 miles, that means our volunteer drivers drove the length of Minnesota 21,839 times in 2018!
Every time a volunteer offers their time as a volunteer driver, it means one of our fellow residents is receiving the ride they need to access an essential service. Volunteer drivers have very flexible schedules and drive where they choose, all while providing the gift of transportation to those who need a simple ride.
If you are interested in becoming a volunteer driver or know of someone who might be, please contact the Program Developer serving your county to receive information on volunteer driver programs in your area. MNRAAA.org/program-development/
- Betty Christensen (email@example.com): Big Stone, Chippewa, Lac qui Parle, Kandiyohi, McLeod, Meeker, Renville, Swift, and Yellow Medicine counties
- Kelly McDonough (firstname.lastname@example.org): Blue Earth, Brown, Faribault, Le Sueur, Martin, Nicollet, Sibley, Waseca, and Watonwan counties
- Molly Peterson (email@example.com): Cottonwood, Jackson, Lincoln, Lyon, Murray, Nobles, Pipestone, Redwood, and Rock counties