As a resident of Miami County, you know how challenging it can be to get around without a car. Whether you live in a rural area or a small town, you may face long commutes, limited public transit options, or expensive taxi services that eat up your paycheck. If you are one of the many workers who struggle to find reliable transportation to work, you might benefit from the services of Community Rides, a nonprofit organization that aims to make commuting more affordable and accessible for everyone.
What is Community Rides?
Community Rides is a local nonprofit that was founded in 2017 by a group of volunteers who saw the need for a better transportation system in Miami County. Their mission is to provide safe, reliable, and affordable rides to work for individuals who lack access to private vehicles or public transit. They partner with local businesses, social service agencies, and volunteers to offer a range of services that meet the diverse needs of their clients.
How does Community Rides work?
Community Rides operates on a membership basis, which means that riders must sign up for a monthly or annual subscription to use their services. The membership fee is based on a sliding scale, depending on the rider’s income level, family size, and other factors. The fee covers the cost of the rides, which are provided by volunteer drivers who use vans that are provided by the program. The riders can schedule their rides in advance or on demand, depending on their work schedule and availability. Community Rides also offers a carpooling program, which allows riders to share rides with other members who live or work nearby.
Who can benefit from Community Rides?
Community Rides is designed to serve low-income workers, seniors, people with disabilities, and other individuals who face transportation barriers that limit their job opportunities or reduce their quality of life. The organization works with local employers to identify their employees who could benefit from their services and to promote the benefits of reliable transportation. They also partner with social service agencies to provide rides for clients who need to access health care, education, or other essential services.
Why is Community Rides important?
Community Rides is important for several reasons. First, it helps to reduce the economic and social costs of transportation insecurity, which can lead to missed work hours, job loss, lower wages, and increased stress. By providing affordable and reliable transportation, Community Rides enables workers to access better job opportunities, improve their job performance, and enhance their overall well-being. Second, it promotes community engagement and volunteerism by bringing together people who share a common goal of helping others. Community Rides relies on the generosity of its volunteers, who donate their time and resources to support their fellow residents. Third, it contributes to the sustainability of the local economy by reducing the carbon footprint of transportation and supporting local businesses that benefit from the increased mobility of their employees and customers.
How can you support Community Rides?
There are several ways that you can support Community Rides and their mission. You can become a member if you need affordable transportation to work or if you want to contribute to the organization’s sustainability. You can also volunteer as a driver, a dispatcher, or a community ambassador who spreads the word about the benefits of Community Rides. You can donate money, vehicles, or other resources that can help the organization expand its services and reach more people. Finally, you can advocate for transportation equity and social justice by raising awareness about the challenges that low-income workers face and by supporting policies and programs that address these issues.
Community Rides is a nonprofit organization that provides a valuable service to Miami County residents who need affordable transportation to work. By offering safe, reliable, and accessible rides, Community Rides helps to reduce transportation insecurity, promote community engagement, and support the local economy. If you or someone you know needs transportation assistance, or if you want to get involved in a meaningful way, consider joining or supporting Community Rides today. Together, we can make Miami County a better place to live, work, and thrive.