Today we got our first long look at the new Western Southland Health Shuttle as it was being blessed into service for St John and the Western Southland community.
Pictured left are Leah Boniface (St John Riverton Area Committee), Perry Ferguson (St John Riverton Area Committee Chairman), and Peter Ayson (St John Otautau Area Committee Chairman) opening the ceremony.
A crowd of supporters and volunteers listened as Peter Ayson and Perry Ferguson acknowledged how the shuttle came to be through large contributions by the Riverton Area Committee and the Takitimu PHO; and what it will take to keep it going - more financial contributions, volunteer drivers, and a scheduler to coordinate appointments, patients and drivers. The key role of scheduler will be taken on by Pat Stearne. Twelve drivers have already signed up but there is a need for more.
Leah Boniface laid her hand on the vehicle and blessed the vehicle with a solemn yet uplifting prayer.
The shuttle is a smart-looking Toyota van with not too many k's on it. One of its features is a seat that swivels out of the vehicle and can be lowered for easy access.
The shuttle will be housed at the Otautau St John premises but is available for all of the Western Southland area. It is to be used for all ages who need transportation to medical appointments.
The shuttle is a great asset for the district - thanks in particular to the financial help of the St John Riverton Area Commitee and the Takitimu PHO.