Photo by Lorie Palmer
Katie Manifold is the agency driver for COAST Transportation and serves the Grangeville area.
As of Tuesday, November 22, 2016
Do you know of someone elderly or disabled who may need some help with transportation in Idaho County? COAST Transportation may be the answer for them.
COAST provides public transportation throughout Latah, Nez Perce, Clearwater and Idaho counties. This is currently available at no cost to clients, with funding provided by Community Action Partnership/Area on Aging in Lewiston, Disability Action Center in Moscow, Lewiston and Idaho Transportation Department.
“I think of what it would mean to me to not be able to drive and have my independence,” said Katie Manifold. Manifold is the agency driver in Grangeville. “I would want someone to help me out by being available to take me places.”
COAST operates Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
“COAST occasionally does make exceptions to extend hours or add weekend days if we can find willing drivers,” explained Craig VanTine, contracts and grants manager. “Most of our clients request rides to medical appointments, senior mealsites, and shopping trips. However, there are no limitations for requests — legal, personal care, recreational, connections to other transportation including the bus and airport.”
Manifold said her favorite part of the job is the people she meets and the stories she hears.
“I just love the people, and doing the driving also helped me meet people,” she said.
Manifold moved from North Carolina in 2010 after she married Sam Manifold, whom she met when he was stationed at Ft. Bragg. The couple has one son, Arron, 5.
“One reason this job is so great for me is Aaron can be with me,” she said. “The clients love him and are so good to him.”
Manifold drives up to three people at a time to medical and other appointments, schedules weekly shopping trips to Lewiston and also drives to and from the Grangeville Senior Citizens Center meal site.
Most of clients request rides to medical appointments, senior mealsites, and shopping trips. However, VanCline said, there are no limitations for requests.
COAST is the transportation division of the Council on Aging and Human Services, with offices in Colfax, Wash. It also operates public transportation services in Whitman, Asotin, and Garfield counties.
“Our biggest challenge is finding volunteer drivers. We provide mileage reimbursement for our volunteers who use their own vehicles to transport ambulatory residents. It is easy to become a volunteer and additional insurance is provided for accidents/liability,” explained VanTine. “Volunteers have complete control over their own schedule and who they drive. Some drive nearly every day and others once or twice a month. Volunteers have background and drivers checks done so clients can feel safe.”
VanTine said, “Katie is an exceptional young lady who has worked for us for several years, so she has built a great relationship with those she drives.”
VanTine said the previous Grangeville-area volunteer driver retired, so COAST is currently in need of area volunteers.