New van to help Evansville Promise Zone residents get to grocery store

New van to help Evansville Promise Zone residents get to grocery store

EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - Help is on the way for people with disabilities living in Evansville's Promise Zone.

A new handicap-accessible van will soon be taking those shoppers to and from the grocery store. This was all made possible by a collaboration with several Evansville organizations.

They are calling it the “PZ Express,” because many neighborhoods here in the Evansville Promise Zone do not have a grocery store within walking distance. They refer to these areas as “food deserts.”

The Missing Pieces organization has three other vans they have been using to transport people, but none of them were handicap accessible.

So with the help of Bridge Builders transportation, a $30,000 grant from Evansville Municipal Planning Organization and a 20 percent match from the Department of Metropolitan Development the van became a reality.

“Sometimes we take for granted the ability to jump in the car and go to the grocery store but there are a lot of people, especially in our urban core which is the Evansville Promise Zone, that don’t have that option,” explained Evansville Promise Zone Director Silas Matchem. "It’s all about community partnerships, driving the community in the right direction and making sure that we have the necessary resources for individuals who need it the most.

They are still deciding on all of the designated pick-up locations and times for this new van. They hope they can begin serving the community next month.

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