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Jeanne, who is in her 90′s, wishes to remain active as long as possible. She volunteers twice a week at her church and at an elementary school. A few months ago, Jeanne had to stop driving because of a vision problem. She could no longer volunteer because she did not have a ride. When she heard about ITNLehighValley™, she immediately signed up and has resumed her volunteer activities. Everyone was so happy to have Jeanne back. Her independence was restored.
What do you do when you notice Mom’s driving skills aren’t as sharp as they used to be? How do you provide transportation for Dad when the doctor says he needs to turn in the keys?
ITNRacineCounty, 6216 Washington Ave., Suite G, provides affordable transportation options for seniors ages 55 and older and those with visual impairments. It replicates the feeling of personal car ownership by giving rides in volunteers’ vehicles at any time.
Katherine Freund is well aware of the complexity of the transportation problem confronting the nation – and particularly rural states such as Maine – as an estimated 10,000 baby boomers turn 65 every day in the U.S.
Lack of public transit, limited pools of taxpayer dollars and senior citizens’ reluctance to “burden” anyone else are a few of the challenges communities face as they struggle to help older residents who either cannot or should not get behind the wheel.
Westporter Peggy Kamins, long committed to social activism in Westport and surrounding communities, is the inaugural recipient of a national award known as the John Alexander Award for Leadership and Excellence from ITNAmerica, a national organization that offers independent, dignified transportation for senior citizens.
The local chapter of the national network is known as ITNCoastalCT which serves seniors and the visually impaired in six local towns, including Westport. Since 2008, Kamins was drawn to the concept of helping seniors stay independent for as long as possible in their homes where they can age in place with grace and dignity aided by volunteer drivers who could alleviate the many problems that surface when it is no longer possible to drive one’s own car safely.
Problems with her vision forced Carol Hansen to retire not only as a judge on the Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals, but from driving a car.
“Take life with whatever it hands you, but I’m fine with it as long as I have someone to help me drive,” Hansen said. “That’s just critical, absolutely critical.”
Hansen’s daughter, Elizabeth Hatcher, read about ITNAmerica and thought it would be useful to her mother.
ITNAmerica is a national nonprofit transportation system for older and visually impaired adults.
The founder of the Maine-based ITNAmerica plans to testify before the Senate Special Committee on Aging, which is examining transportation challenges facing the nation’s seniors.
Wednesday’s hearing will focus on options — both publicly and privately funded — that allow seniors to continue to live independently after they are no longer able to drive.
The Independent Transportation Network (ITN) CharlestonTrident, will hold its fifth annual Oyster Roast, Shucking for Seniors, on Sunday, Oct. 27, from 2 to 5 p.m. at Bowens Island Restaurant, located at 1870 Bowens Island Road.
One hundred percent of the proceeds support ITNCharlestonTrident’s dignified transportation program for seniors and the visually impaired in Charleston County. Operating for over six years; ITN is a non-profit organization that provides more than 500 rides a month to seniors 60 and older and visually impaired adults utilizing volunteer and paid drivers. Riders become members of ITN and schedule their door-through-door rides in advance. The South Carolina Aging in Place Coalition is a non-profit organization advocating for people to prepare to remain in their residence; independently, comfortably and safely.
Seniors in Sussex County, Delaware may have a new way to get to doctors’ appointments and the grocery store. A small group is organizing to develop a senior transportation cooperative, to be called ITNSouthernDelaware, based on the volunteer-driven, nonprofit business model developed by ITNAmerica.
ITNAmerica, based out of Westbrook, Maine, bills itself as a “transportation solution for America’s aging population.” It provides a franchise-like template to affiliates across the United States that includes a business plan and timeline, budget models and consulting in the areas of staff development and fundraising, custom-built ITNRides software, setup of a website and email, marketing support, and training—everything the founding board members in Delaware might need.
Imagine you have arthritis in every joint. With a stiff neck, knees that won’t bend past 40 degrees and arms that take great effort to hold up, driving would be a chore. Getting into the driver’s seat would be a controlled fall of sorts, and after plopping down behind the wheel, turning your head to check the mirrors would be nearly impossible.
After a certain age, driving becomes a liability. Vision deteriorates, reaction times slow, and just getting into and out of a car safely can prove challenging.
But it’s not easy to convince someone — especially a parent — that it’s time to give up the keys.
For advice on how to know when it’s time to stop driving, and how to approach the topic, we spoke with Dave Melton, the managing director of global safety for Liberty Mutual Insurance.