01/13/12

Transportation: Small Solutions Can Address Large NeedsTransportation: Small Solutions Can Address Large Needs

 

Transportation: small solutions can address large needs

From Joan Pasiuk, Bike Walk Twin Cities

After the May tornado that devastated areas of North Minneapolis, many in the community were left without viable transportation options. In response, TLC partnered with the Salvation Army to provide transit passes to North Minneapolis residents affected by the tornado (thank you to our members and friends who contributed to this fund). I recently talked with Elizabeth Clayton, one of the recipients of these transit passes.

 "Everything was so horrible," Elizabeth said. "Those bus passes were everything to us. I don't know what we would have done if we would have had to figure out transportation." She received our passes over three months to provide transportation for her family of three children and numerous extended dependents. "The bus passes made everything come together - stuff you don't think about - like how you'll get to school and doctor appointments." Being able to rely on the bus meant that her family could travel every day from their neighborhood schools and destinations to the hotel in Brooklyn Park where they stayed while their house was being restored.

Elizabeth appreciated the passes though her budget continues to be tight. Fortunately, new bicycles the family received for Christmas (donated by Mr. Michael Recycles) provide another transportation option.  Elizabeth plans to use the bikes for shopping and to go to church.

Clearly the simple action of distributing donated bus passes in a time of life upheaval made a difference to Elizabeth and others. Transportation is an often-overlooked need. Reliable transportation, fundamental to a productive life, matters in recovery from a tragic storm and in all the days to come -a conversation we look forward to continuing in North Minneapolis and surrounding communities in 2012.