Group Trip Transportation Pilot Project for Youth & Adults with Disabilities
BORP is able to fill the gap in public transportation by offering group trip transportation for people with disabilities. Thanks to a grant from the Alameda County Transportation Commission (Alameda CTC) to conduct a group trip transportation pilot project in Northern Alameda County for children, youth, and adults with disabilities participating in sports and recreation programs. The project addresses the existing gap of accessible group trip transportation for children, youth and adults with disabilities. The PAPCO priority of “expanding the spectrum of transportation services and resources available to seniors and people with disabilities in Alameda County” is realized through the use of Measure B funds and the Paratransit Gap Grant Program.
Youth participating in BORP sports programs are often too young to utilize AC transit, BART, or paratransit without a parent. Because many of these youth are low income, parents may not have the means to drive them on the weekend. Without BORP providing transportation, many of these youth are not able to participate in sports activities.
Most recreation programs and team sports programs, such as wheelchair basketball or power soccer, require that groups of wheelchair users be transported at the same time. The BORP model allows for transportation of at least 5 persons who use wheelchairs in one vehicle with one driver. To do this with current service providers, one would need five vehicles with five drivers, a very costly prospect.
Grant funds will be used to address this gap in providing group trips for children, youth, and adults with disabilities – particularly minority and low income individuals. BORP has also received a Federal Transportation Administration grant (5310 program) that allowed for the purchase of a 27-passenger, disabled accessible vehicle with the capacity to accommodate five riders in wheelchairs. More passengers can be accommodated if riders can transfer to conventional bus seating. Alameda CTC funding was used for the accessibility modifications to the vehicle, as well as the start-up service, including a Transportation Coordinator and Vehicle Driver(s).
Project benefits include: increased access for individuals with disabilities in group transportation for sports and recreation activities; teams of disabled youth and families with disabilities will be able to travel in groups in a manner that is equal to non-disabled individuals; individuals with disabilities will benefit from peer support and bonding experienced in group travel; and a model will be developed and tested that may be replicated in other parts of the county.
You can find more information on Alameda CTC at: http://www.AlamedaCTC.org/