(Grinnell, IA – July 8, 2020) – Transportation to appointments is an important service provided to the residents/tenants of St. Francis Manor, Seeland Park and the Hammond Center for Assisted Living. During a recent fundraising campaign, three matching pledges were met which helped to raise enough money to purchase two new handicapped accessible vans. Pictured with the new vans are L-R: Kent Brown, General Sales Manager, Wes Finch Auto Plaza; Dion Schrack, Executive Administrator, St. Francis Manor & Seeland Park; Barb Baker, Chair, St. Francis Manor Foundation and Director of Advertising and Community Relations, Grinnell Mutual Group; John McCulley, Driver; Sammi Bryan, Hammond Center Manager/RN; Tiffany Criswell, Administrator/RN, St. Francis Manor; and Jaxon Drake, Driver.
“We are grateful to all of the donors who contributed to our van fund,” said Executive Administrator Dion Schrack. “Because of their generosity, pledges from Clara Scott, Ken & Mary Eggman, and Grinnell Mutual Group Foundation were matched. In addition, Kent Brown, who also serves as a St. Francis Manor/Seeland Park/Hammond Center board member, found us a great deal on two 2019 chassis as well as the wheelchair lifts and retrofitting which allowed us to purchase two vans instead of one!”
“With the additional transportation needs of the Hammond Center tenants, as well as the increasing number of medical appointments in Des Moines and Iowa City, acquiring a third handicapped accessible van became a priority last fall,” added Barb Baker, who will complete her second year of serving as Chair of the St. Francis Manor Foundation this fall. “I was pleased that the GMG Foundation was able to offer a matching pledge to help ensure that transportation is available to all residents/tenants who need it.”
Although the new vans have not been quite as busy lately due to the COVID-19 pandemic halting all non-essential transportation, St. Francis Manor resident Sharon Mastin has already enjoyed multiple rides to appointments. “I love the new van!” commented Sharon. “It’s a very smooth ride in my wheelchair and I don’t feel every bump like I did in the old van. It’s nice and roomy and I also like the tinted windows so the sun doesn’t shine in as brightly. I’m so thankful for this service that is provided free of charge to me. My driver, John, is so helpful and accommodating.”