Winnebago Catch-A-Ride program needs more volunteers

OSHKOSH,Wis. (WBAY) - “When I found out about this I go, here’s one way that we can help people get to their jobs,” said Deb Martin.

Martin has been a volunteer driver for Winnebago Catch-A-Ride for about six months. In that time, she’s helped roughly 60 people get to and from work.

“It’s quite humbling actually to do because it’s not that big of a deal, it doesn’t take that much time out of my day,” said Martin.

The program uses volunteer drivers like Martin give people rides to work throughout Winnebago County.

Though the Oshkosh area has a bus service, it has limited hours and only serves certain locations in the county. The idea is that Catch-A-Ride can fill those gaps.

“We really see the sky is the limit for this and we’re only just getting started,” said Greater Oshkosh Economic Development CEO Jason White.

White says the key to reaching those limits is through more drivers.

“The more drivers we have the more times of day we can cover, the more pockets of Winnebago County we can cover,” said White.

“There are so many more people that could use this service if there were more drivers,” said Martin.

There’s already a high demand for the on-demand transportation.

“Between April and June of 2019, over 200 rides were given through this program for people to get to work,” said White.

Drivers, who must meet certain qualifications, do get reimbursed for their mileage and make their own schedule. Passengers pay 25 cents a mile, and the rest is covered through a state grant.

“This is a good opportunity to do something meaningful by helping one individual or many individuals get to work,” said White. “And by that, you’re helping your community and you’re helping the overall economy in greater Oshkosh and Winnebago County.”

“If you have even an hour a week, or could give a ride two times a week, maybe even one time a week, please give it a try,” said Martin. “I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised and happy to be seeing the difference you can make in our community.”

For more information on how to become a driver or how to sign up for rides, CLICK HERE.