January 21, 2020
When you meet Pat Tansy, you instantly feel comfortable.
A retired pre-school teacher, it’s no surprise Pat exudes warmth, compassion, and naturally draws people, even strangers, in with her magnetic, radiant energy.
After several years of leg and foot problems, she had her right leg amputated. Living alone as an amputee in a rural part of Greenfield with no sidewalks, Pat relies on the safety and convenience of transportation services from Hancock County Senior Services and Hancock Area Rural Transit.
For more than three years, she has been shuttled to doctor appointments, the grocery store, and other destinations around town.
“This transportation service has helped me tremendously with being independent,” she said.
Pat is just one of the 779 clients Hancock County Senior Services transports on a yearly basis. With more than 22,900 trips in 2018, it’s undeniable this service is positively impacting the lives of older and mobility-limited residents in Hancock County, as well as the loved ones surrounding them.
“The whole reason we do what we do is to enable seniors to age in place,” Executive Director Bob Long said. “The transportation program is one small thing that does have a huge impact, and the impact is not only felt on the individual who receives the ride, but it’s felt on the family who can rest assured that their loved one is riding with a certified agency who is very attentive to their safety and mobility restrictions.”
But true Hoosier Hospitality isn’t just about providing quality service – it’s about connecting people in ways that go far beyond in-home care or a bus ride.
To Pat, the drivers are her friends. They don’t just transport her from place to place, they offer her companionship and a place to be heard.
“The people that drive for them are so wonderful,” she said. “I have gotten to know them personally and I consider them friends. They’re such a good group of people. So nice to talk to and so caring.”
Many drivers live in Hancock County, which makes their work personal. It isn’t simply just another job to Hancock County Senior Services employees, but a way to make a real difference in the lives of the neighbors of their community.
“The way I see it, these are my residents. This is Hancock County. This is where I live,” driver Bob Moss said. “Nobody can take care of them any better than I can, or any of our other drivers. It’s all about getting our clients where they need to be, where they want to be, with dignity and respect.”
And for over 40 years, they have.
From providing in-home, non-medical support services to persons over the age of 60, to transporting those who need it the most to critical medical appointments, Hancock County Senior Services makes it simpler for those who may have it hard.
“People have to get from point A to point B, so we make it easier by offering an affordable and sustainable way to get around,” Bob Long said. “And we do that to a great degree with assistance from United Way of Central Indiana.”
In June, 2019 Hancock County Senior Services received a $30,000 grant from United Way’s Basic Needs Fund to support their Transportation services.