Agency Adds 45,000 Local Trips through Vehicle Grant Program

Sep 7, 2017

12 non-profit groups awarded vans to provide needed rides in their communities

Snohomish County, Wash. – Cheering teams of non-profit staff and volunteers filled the Community Transit Board room today as the transit agency announced recipients of the 13th Van GO vehicle grant program.

Twelve local community organizations were awarded Community Transit vehicles that have reached the end of their service life at the agency. Together, 10 vehicles will provide 45,000 annual trips to seniors, disabled students, at-risk youth and others who benefit from the work of these local organizations.

Since the Van GO program began in 2000, Community Transit has awarded 136 vehicles to a variety of 501c3 non-profit organizations around Snohomish County. This year, the agency awarded eight seven-passenger vans and two 16-passenger mini-buses. By state law, other Community Transit surplus vehicles are sold at public auction to help recoup the public investment. More information about the Van GO program is online at www.communitytransit.org/VanGo

“We are very excited that we are able to grant some of our surplus vehicles to non-profit organizations to enhance access to transportation for all residents,” said Community Transit Board of Directors Secretary and Mukilteo Mayor Jennifer Gregerson, who awarded the vehicles with CEO Emmett Heath.

“Community organizations are often better equipped to serve their neighborhood residents than we are,” said Heath. “Our ability to provide them with a vehicle to better serve those residents is a partnership Community Transit is very proud of.”

This year, 33 groups submitted applications demonstrating how they would use the vehicles to benefit people in their community. In all, 12 non-profit organizations will be able to provide trips to their community members thanks to retired vanpool vans and paratransit mini-buses they received in the competitive grant program.

HandUpProject Van GO winner

This year’s Van GO recipients include:

  • Cocoon House (Everett)

  • Glacier Peak Institute/North Counties Family Services (Darrington)

  • Granite Falls Community Coalition/Granite Falls Foodbank (Granite Falls)

  • Hand Up Project (Edmonds)

  • Josephine Sunset Home (Stanwood)

  • Korean Community Service Center (Edmonds)

  • Monroe Gospel Women’s Mission (Monroe)

  • Northwest’s Child (Seattle)

  • Pioneer Human Services (Marysville)

  • Shepherd’s Garden Senior Housing (Lynnwood)

Cocoon House

Cocoon House serves homeless and at-risk youth through a system of prevention, housing and outreach services. This seven-passenger van will be used by outreach staff to provide more than 2,150 trips to approximately 2,500 teens to employment, appointments and school.

Glacier Peak Institute

Glacier Peak Institute provides the underserved and at-risk youth of Darrington with science, technology, recreation, engineering, arts, math and skills, or STREAM programs. Partnering with North Counties Family Services, this seven-passenger van will provide more than 1,000 trips for youth and developmentally disabled residents.

Granite Falls Community Coalition

The Granite Falls Community Coalition, in partnership with the Granite Falls Foodbank, serve the seniors and families that call Granite Falls home. They will use the seven-passenger van to provide 1,248 trips to struggling community members helping them to access social and health services, get to appointments and to the foodbank.

The Hand Up Project

The Hand Up Project helps people in crisis get themselves to a place of sobriety and self-sufficiency by providing necessities such as food, toiletries, tents, blankets and clothing to individuals in desperate need. The group will use the seven-passenger van to provide the homeless population of Snohomish County with more than 14,000 trips to employment, temporary housing locations and various appointments.

Josephine Sunset Home

Josephine Sunset Home provides housing and services to seniors, and also hosts an ECEAP children’s program at its facility in Stanwood. Josephine Sunset Home will use this 16-passenger mini-bus to provide more than 4,700 trips transporting seniors to doctor and dentist appointments, as well as transporting low-income students between home and school.

Korean Community Service Center

The Korean Community Service Center is committed to empowering, educating and inspiring Korean American seniors, youth and families through counseling, education, bilingual, cultural and social services. The group will utilize this seven-passenger van to provide 1,800 trips taking seniors and youth to various programs and to citizenship assistance workshops.

Monroe Gospel Women’s Mission

The Monroe Gospel Women’s Mission provides education, medical and spiritual services to 100 physically or mentally disabled homeless women in the Monroe area. The organization will use the seven-passenger van to provide nearly 2,400 trips transporting these women to necessary services such as church, appointments and the foodbank.

Northwest’s Child

Northwest’s Child serves the special care needs of school aged children, youth and young adults with severe and profound disabilities. Providing more than 6,500 rides, the 16-passenger mini-bus will enable the children to have positive experiences participating in community activities.

Pioneer Human Services

Pioneer Human Services offers comprehensive programs to treat behaviorally challenged youth and help families in crisis. One of these residential programs, Tamarack House, is located in a remote area of the Tulalip Reservation and provides a structured group environment where residents learn life and social skills while participating in intensive therapy based on their individual needs. This seven-passenger van will provide nearly 11,000 trips to school, appointments and recreational opportunities.

Shepherd’s Garden Senior Housing

Shepherd’s Garden Senior Housing provides subsidized housing for seniors in the South Snohomish County area. This seven-passenger van will provide safe, quality door-to-door transportation for the elderly population they serve helping to foster self-sustainability and promote independence. With the van the group will provide 1,750 trips to activities, medical appointments, shopping excursions and recreation events on a regular basis.

Community Transit has been responsible for providing transportation options for Snohomish County residents for 40 years, including bus and paratransit service, vanpool and alternative commute options. Call Community Transit at (425) 353-RIDE or (800) 562-1375 for bus information, or (888) 814-1300 for carpool or vanpool information, or go to www.communitytransit.org