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Random Age-Friendly: CREST chairman addresses Rotary

Published on September 3, 2017

Random Age-Friendly chairman, Larry Reid, brings Clarenville’s Rotary Club up to date on a successful three years for CREST (Clarenville Region Extended Seniors’ Transportation).

©Photo courtesy of Random Age-Friendly Communities

Recently, Larry Reid, Chairperson of the Random Age-Friendly Communities organization, the governing board for CREST (Clarenville Region Extended Seniors’ Transportation) was invited to speak to Clarenville’s Rotary Club.

Rotary is a global network of 1.2 million neighbors, friends, leaders, and problem-solvers who come together to make positive, lasting change in communities at home and abroad.
Solving real problems takes real commitment and vision.  For more than 110 years, Rotary members have used their passion, energy, and intelligence to take action on sustainable projects.  
From literacy and peace to water and health, they are always working to better our world, and they stay committed to the end.
Rotarians are community-builders.  They collaborate with community leaders who want to get to work on projects that have a real, lasting impact on people’s lives.
The Rotary Club began in Clarenville in 1977. They meet each Monday at 12:15 at the Clarenville Inn. They are part of Rotary district 7820.
The Rotary Club of Clarenville is known in the community for the Canada Goose Sanctuary, the Rotary walking trails, its support for the Age-Friendly Park, and its continuous financial contributions to CREST.
Knowing how important the CREST bus is to seniors and people with mobility issues in the Clarenville area, the Rotary Club became a partner more than three years ago to help make life better for so many who just need that helping hand.
In his presentation, Mr. Reid provided the Rotary Club members with up-to-date statistics on CREST operations.
Over the past three years, CREST has served more than 4,500 people in Clarenville and 11 neighbouring communities.
Older men and women and those with mobility issues have been provided with affordable and reliable transportation for outings such as medical, banking, and hairdressing appointments, social activities, grocery shopping, etc.
In addition to providing a service to residents for their day-to-day activities, CREST has also provided transportation to a number of groups on evenings and weekends.  
These excursions are provided on a cost-recovery basis and take place based on the availability of a volunteer driver.
Some examples of CREST excursions:  Retired nurses took a trip to Bonavista, Special Olympics Team went to Grand Falls-Windsor, Clarenville Royal Canadian Legion members attended a meeting in Lethbridge, Clarenville Lions Club enjoyed a Lions’ social on Random Island, a group of seniors visited Glovertown, Hillview 50+ Club took a day trip to Clarenville, Twin Town 50+ Club made a visit to Bonavista, Clarenville Retirement Centre residents went to Tim Horton’s for coffee, United Church Women’s League experienced an outing in Bonavista.
Some individuals have also benefitted on evenings and weekends; for example, wheelchair-bound grandparents were able to attend their grandchildren’s weddings, and wheelchair-bound customers have gone to BINGO on Wednesday nights.
CREST has also offered free transportation for residents over the age of 60 and persons with mobility issues to civic activities and events such as July 1st celebrations, CREST Volunteer Appreciation ceremony, Santa Claus Parade, Remembrance Day Parade, and Arts under the Stars.
Transportation for CNA students to collect food for the local food bank on Halloween was also made available by CREST.
Reid ended his presentation stating that CREST is definitely responding to the needs of the people living in the communities it serves and that all of this has been made possible with the strong support from CREST’s 90 volunteers who have given over 35,000 hours of their time, a tremendous accomplishment.