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Prime Time | Missy Thomas: Transportation volunteers help bring joy

By Missy Thomas, Northwoods Caregivers

Just imagine: The temperature is cool, but the sun is shining. The birds are chirping. There is a light, refreshing breeze whispering through the trees.

On such a perfect day, just imagine walking down a path along Lake Bemidji, listening to the water lap against the shoreline. Just imagine sitting at an outdoor table at a downtown restaurant, sipping a cup of coffee and watching people go by. Just imagine taking a leisure drive thru the country, admiring the lakes, the gorgeous colors of the trees and any wildlife you come across. Just imagine the freedom to enjoy such invigorating fall activities.

Now imagine you don’t have the capabilities to do any of those things, due to fragile health conditions or simply lack of transportation. Imagine how such a day wouldn’t seem so “perfect” when feelings of depression or even anxiety take over, knowing you aren’t able to drive yourself to the lake, or to a restaurant or even to the grocery store. Imagine being alone, feeling trapped in your own home and unable to enjoy the beautiful scenery that thrives in northern Minnesota.

Because there are so many individuals in our community who depend on others for transportation, Northwoods Caregivers depends on our community for volunteers. Our volunteers provide transportation to medical appointments and grocery stores. They go out for coffee and take their Carereceiver to church activities and around-town errands. They ease the worry of loneliness and help maintain another’s independence. They become a friend.

With the weather changing, more and more “On Call Transportation Volunteers” will be needed with our organization. Encourage your family, friends and neighbors to get involved with Northwoods Caregivers, or become a volunteer yourself. Just imagine the difference you’ll make in someone’s life. For more information, call Katie: (218) 333-8262.

MISSY THOMAS is director of Care Services at Northwoods Caregivers.