Kid One Transport hopes it will get financial assistance from the city of Birmingham. It provides children transportation to medical appointments. The service says it can't help all the people who need it.
Kid One has requested 70,000 dollars from the Birmingham City Council. The Executive Director says it couldn't help 3,000 people last year. That's because demand was high and there wasn't enough funding for vehicle expenses. For some people, this ride could mean the difference between life and death.
Patrick Galloway, heads out Tuesday to make the last two stops of the day. "Everybody that rides is always so grateful we're there to pick them up and make sure they get to see the doctor." A visit Galloway says might not be made without Kid One. According to some parents, it's a life line. Executive Director Karen Peterlin recalls talking with a parent about Kid One. "She said it so vividly, if it wasn't for Kid One, some children might die and as desperate as that sounds, maybe some kids will die if Kid One's not there to get them to the doctor."
While scheduling is built around children with the most serous illnesses, like cancer, they take many children for routine visits to keep them healthy. Kashawn Gray's son is getting picked up from the dentist. "When I need to get to a doctor appointment or dentist we are there on time with no problem and home. It's a ride, requested by so many, not everyone can get on board. Peterlin says "Over 80% of families we serve in the greater Birmingham don't have an automobile." She says 8-thousand families are registered with Kid One, a reason why it needs additional money to put more vehicles on the road.
Peterlin says "I think the council and the mayor understand the need, but sometimes I don't think they understand the need is as critical."
But each day, it continues making those stops, using every resource it can. "You can go home at night, knowing you made a difference in somebody's life"
Karen Peterlin says Kid One lost funding from the city last year, but was able to raise money to make up the difference. In order to qualify for Kid One, you must be permanently or temporarily without a vehicle. A majority of clients live at 100 or 200 percent of the poverty level.
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