Port Pirie's community transport service at the crossroads

ON THE MOVE: Michele Pole, who is a mobility co-ordinator with Moving People Pirie, chats with Rotarians Warren Johns, left, and Barry Mudge after speaking at a recent dinner meeting.
ON THE MOVE: Michele Pole, who is a mobility co-ordinator with Moving People Pirie, chats with Rotarians Warren Johns, left, and Barry Mudge after speaking at a recent dinner meeting.

The future of Moving People Pirie, our community transport scheme. is unknown after funding dries up.

Mobility co-ordinator Michele Pole outlined the scheme as guest speaker at the Rotary Club of Port Pirie.

She said the 12-month pilot program had begun in November last year with eight months having elapsed already.

Ms Pole is a “transport broker”. funded by the state government, to arrange services to carry people to non-urgent medical appointments and support people who live alone and who have few social connections.

The service is a blend of various transport methods – and possibly another vehicle that Ms Pole would like to acquire to help people “who fall through the cracks”.

“If I could make someone’s life more independent, I wanted to be part of it;” she said.

The service, described as a “total transport concept”, now supports 18 people and has helped with 318 trips.

Ms Pole, of Port Germein, urged Rotarians to spread the word about the scheme. “That is the best way to keep us going,” she said.

Drivers and companions are needed. The service covers Port Pirie, but also extends to Orroroo, Peterborough, Jamestown and Crystal Brook.

“I see so many people who need the service,” Ms Pole said, adding that she hopes that a way will be found for it to continue.

She said two bus companies and two taxi firms were involved.

“There is no competition. They are there to help the people in Port Pirie … it is how we can get it to work for the people," she said.

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