Community car booked for first trip

A three-month trial of a community vehicle for Kurow will begin at the end of the month.

On its first trip, the vehicle will take two women in their 80s to a Isla Grant concert in Oamaru on August 29.

The vehicle, a Toyota Corolla leased from the Twizel and Tekapo Community Vehicle Trust, has arrived after a public meeting organised by the Waitaki Valley Community Society in conjunction with Environment Canterbury established there was sufficient interest in a community vehicle to trial one.

A Waitaki Valley Community Vehicle Trust, with representatives from Omarama, Otematata, Kurow and Duntroon, will be established if the trial is successful.

Trust steering committee member Carron Cossens said the vehicle would be available for hire to people from Omarama to Duntroon based on a price per kilometre for the trial, with donations and grants already covering some costs. For example, a return trip during the trial from Kurow to Oamaru would cost $40 per person.

Already, six people had volunteered to drive the vehicle and bookings were coming in. Other volunteer drivers were needed in Omarama, Otematata and Duntroon.

Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher had granted $150 from the mayoral fund, the Ahuriri Community Board $25, an anonymous donor $250 and there had been other donations which would cover leasing the vehicle, on-road costs, parking and refreshments for the driver.

The grants recognised the need for such a service in the community and its isolation, particularly for elderly people or those who could not drive.

If the trial was successful, the trust would be formed and a vehicle bought by raising funds through grants and donations, she said.

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