Council on Aging of Middle Tennessee Announces Volunteer Ride Service & Call Center NASHVILLE, Tenn., Sept. 23, 2016 – The Council on Aging of Middle Tennessee and the Senior Transportation Leadership Coalition announced that a new volunteer-based ride service for older adults will be named Senior Ride Nashville. The service is slated to officially launch service in Nashville in mid-2017.
“Nashville and Middle Tennessee are built around the use of cars as the primary means of mobility. While this is beginning to change with the advancement of mass transit options, there is a rapidly growing population of older adults who will find great value in creative ways to replace driving themselves while still enjoying the mobility provided by a car,” said Nashville Mayor Megan Barry. “Senior Ride Nashville fits into the fabric of transportation options available across Nashville— now and in the future.”
A 2011 Transportation for America study revealed that older adults who no longer drive make 15 percent fewer trips to the doctor, 59 percent fewer trips to shop or eat out and 65 percent fewer trips to visit friends and family. This study also noted that the Nashville region ranked 4th worst in terms of percentage of seniors with poor access to public transportation.
Senior Ride Nashville is an effort of COA and the Senior Transportation Leadership Coalition to address a gap in transportation services for Nashville’s rapidly growing older adult population. The new, affordable ride service will complement existing ride options by providing assisted transportation for seniors who no longer drive or limit their driving and qualify for the service. Screened and trained volunteer drivers will use their personal vehicles to provide door-to-door and door-through-door transportation to medical appointments, grocery stores, pharmacies and other destinations. Senior Ride Nashville will also function as a call center, linking older adults with a range of ride and service options based upon personal needs, affordability and desired destinations.