The following is a feature story from Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations on Dial-A-Ride Nova Scotia.
Dial-A-Ride Yarmouth is helping residents in the community by providing transportation to many activities and events in the area.
"We take people to just about everything, including medical appointments, hair dressers, visiting, outings for groups," said Eleanor Cottreau, co-ordinator of the Handicapped Organization Representing Disabilities (HOPE), which oversees the Dial-A-Ride program in Yarmouth. "We take students to the Burridge Campus of the Nova Scotia Community College and Collège de l'Acadie, and children with special needs to school. We even made a trip to Halifax to bring a woman back home from the hospital."
The service also provides transportation to hotels for people with disabilities who arrive on the Prince of Fundy ferry. During the holiday season, the service drives residents around the community to see the Christmas lights.
"The service certainly allows people to travel with dignity and with some independence," said Ms. Cottreau.
Inclusive transportation has been available in the community since October 1999. The service provides between 450 and 500 rides a month to the 126 clients who are registered with the service.
Dial-A-Ride Nova Scotia provides transportation for Nova Scotians who have disabilities or low incomes or who are elderly, and who need safe, affordable and accessible transportation. It offers a wide range of services, including wheelchair-accessible vehicles for people with special mobility needs.
In areas where there are Dial-A-Ride programs, the service can pick up residents at home, take them where they need to go and return them later in the day. It is essential for those who cannot afford transportation by other means to travel to medical appointments, job interviews and other activities.
Up to one-third of the funding for Dial-A-Ride comes from the provincial government, while non-profit community-based organizations raise the rest of the funds.
"This service is helping to improve the lives of many Nova Scotians and we're proud to take part in it," said Angus MacIsaac, Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations. "We're grateful to volunteers and community organizations who have come together to make it happen."
More information about Dial-A-Ride Nova Scotia is available on the Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations Web site, at www.gov.ns.ca/snsmr/dialaride, or the toll-free hotline at 1- 877-305-RIDE (7433).
njm July 8, 2002 9:48 A.M.