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Seniors First launches outreach campaign to promote rural transportation services

Grant provides for outreach to riders and drivers in Sheridan, Alta, Emigrant Gap and North Tahoe
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FACT SHEET
 
What is the My Rides Program?
 
The My Rides Program maintains the former Door-to-Door Rides program that has provided volunteer 
transportation service for more than 40 years to eligible Placer County residents unable to use conventional 
public transit systems. The My Rides Program expands the service area, to include the Rural Mileage 
Reimbursement Program and the First 5 Rural Mileage Reimbursement Program.
 
 
How is the My Rides Program different than the Door-to-Door Program?
 
The My Rides program expands the geographical service area to include three new areas – North Tahoe, 
Sheridan and east of the existing service area at Colfax to the SR-20/I-80 Interchange near Yuba Gap. The My 
Rides Program incorporates two new program enhancements to these areas:
 
• Rural Mileage Reimbursement program allows eligible residents in rural areas to enlist a neigh
 
 bor or friend to provide transportation where volunteer drivers may not be available. The neighbor 
 
 or friend can then be reimbursed for mileage driven to nonemergency medical appointments. The 
 
 neighbor or friend must be approved as a volunteer driver by Seniors First.
 
• First 5 Rural Mileage Reimbursement Program allows families of limited means with children 
 
 prenatal through age 5 to enlist a neighbor or friend to provide transportation where volunteer 
 
 drivers may not be available. The neighbor or friend can then be reimbursed for mileage driven to 
 
 essential needs type trips (nonemergency medical appoints, grocery store, county services).
 
How does the program work?
 
1. Seniors First coordinates a network of volunteer drivers that provide rides for eligible residents to get to 
 
 nonemergency medical appointments as well as essential needs appointments for families with limited 
 
 means. The volunteer drivers have been approved by Seniors First.
 
2. An eligible resident contacts My Rides at 1-800-878-9222, ext. 201 during business hours, and provides 
 
 information about their transportation needs. Seniors First coordinates with an appropriate volunteer driver 
 
 for the requested transportation.
 
3. The volunteer driver typically picks up the client at home and drives them to their destination. Generally 
the driver stays with the client and then drives them back home. In rural areas where there may not be an 
 
 established network of volunteer drivers, eligible residents can enlist a neighbor or friend to provide trans 
 
 portation. Once the neighbor or friend has been approved as a volunteer driver for the program he/she 
 
 can be reimbursed for mileage driven to eligible destinations.
 
 
FACT SHEET
 
Who are the volunteer drivers? How does this part of the program work?
 
Volunteer drivers are individuals who have agreed to provide rides to eligible destinations for Placer County 
residents unable to use conventional public transportation. Volunteers may choose to drive for just one 
person, or make themselves available to the community. Drivers may also choose the times they are available 
to drive as well as the geographical areas they wish to drive. Volunteer drivers are not paid a salary or 
income, but are reimbursed at $0.48 per mile (subject to change) for eligible mileage driven. On a monthly 
basis, drivers submit a mileage reimbursement form that includes volunteer miles driven and the riders served. 
A reimbursement check is provided by Seniors First.
 
To be eligible, a volunteer driver must:
 
• Provide proof of insurance.
 
• Complete a short driver’s training course.
 
• Sign a release of liability.
 
• Be 21 years of age or older.
 
• Drive their own vehicle.
 
• Provide a valid driver’s license.
 
Is there a cost to the requesting individual? How is the program funded?
 
There is no cost to the individual requesting a ride. The program receives funding from three separate sources, 
WPCTSA, Area 4 Agency on Aging and Placer First 5.
 
Program
 
Cost
 
Door to Door
 
 $100,000
 
Voucher Program
 
 $10,000
 
Rural Mileage 
Reimbursement
 
 $37,500
 
First 5 Rural Mileage 
Reimbursement
 
 $15,000
 
Total
 
 $162,500
 
 
 
 
 
Service Area Map
 
 
Funding Source
 
Amount
 
WPCTSA
 
 $92,500
 
Area 4 Agency on Aging
 
 $55,000
 
Placer First 5
 
 $15,000
 
Total
 
 $162,500
 
 
 
 
 
For more information: 
 
Visit: myridesplacer.org
 
or Call: 1.800.878.9222, ext 201
 
 
 

Seniors First has launched an outreach campaign aimed at recruiting riders and drivers in rural communities for its recently expanded My Rides Program.

The My Rides Program was extended earlier this year to offer door-to-door volunteer transportation services in Sheridan, North Tahoe and areas located east of Colfax to the SR20/I-80 Interchange near Yuba Gap. 

Rides are free during weekdays.

Now, under a grant provided by The SCAN Foundation, Seniors First is focused on launching an outreach campaign aimed at raising awareness and use of the new program and evaluating the program’s effectiveness. 

“Expanding the My Rides Program into the rural areas in Placer County is a critical step to improving access to services for seniors and other households in remote areas where lack of public transportation and often difficult road conditions exist,“ said Amy Bakker, Seniors First’s transportation coordinator.

“Transportation services are an important means for those living in rural areas to stay connected to their neighbors and maintain a strong sense of community,” Bakker said. “This grant will enable us to boost outreach services in rural areas where connecting with riders and drivers is often challenging.”

The My Rides Program compliments public transportation by reimbursing volunteers to transport individuals to

non-emergency medical and other appointments, where no transit service exists or when the individual is unable to utilize public transportation for other reasons.  The My Rides Program also offers transportation assistance to families of limited means with children under the age of 6.

My Rides utilizes volunteer drivers who have agreed to provide rides to eligible destinations for Placer County residents unable to use conventional public transportation. Drivers, who are screened by Seniors First, choose the days, times and geographical locations they are available to drive and are reimbursed for the mileage driven.

Seniors and other eligible residents who need rides to non-emergency medical and other essential-needs appointments contact My Rides to arrange for transportation. Riders are typically picked up at home, driven to their destination and then returned back home.

For more information or to inquire about volunteering for the My Rides Program, contact Bakker at (530) 889-9500, extension 220, amyb@seniorsfirst.com or seniorsfirst.org.