Directors united for support

RDNO extends support to United Way emergency transportation assistance program

The Regional District of North Okanagan continues to help an important United Way transportation program.

RDNO directors voted unanimously to continue supporting the United Way North Okanagan Columbia Shuswap’s emergency transportation assistance program, and extended the term from one to three years.

“This program provides free bus tickets to the non-profit sector in our communities,” said Linda Yule, executive director for the United Way North Okanagan Columbia Shuswap.

The program has been up and running since July 2010 when it came to the United Way’s attention that, in many instances, the lack of bus fare was a genuine obstacle for individuals “trying to break their cycle of poverty,” said Yule, “and improve their lives.”

The regional district will provide 250 tickets per quarter, or 1,000 tickets per year, while the City of Vernon also chips in by providing 500 tickets per quarter.

Yule explained that the regional district is not easily accessible for people requiring services without some mode of transportation.

In some instances, she said, staff at various agencies are paying out of their own pocket or some staff will drive clients in their own personal vehicles.

“Other agencies are just not able to provide the funds for bus fare,” she said.

Among the agencies in the North Okanagan included in the emergency transportation assistance program are the Armstrong Boys and Girls Club, North Okanagan Youth and Family Services Society, Vernon Women’s Transition House, Upper Room Mission, Whitevalley Community Resource Centre and Enderby and District Community Resource Centre.

The United Way administers the program and takes care of the distribution of bus tickets and reporting of usage.