June 19th, 2019 ~ Vol. 89 No. 25
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New Bus needed for seniors
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
David Selles Photo
Photo Desc
David Selles
Pass Herald Reporter
The seniors at York Creek Lodge are looking for help in getting a new bus to transport them around the area.

Currently, the seniors are using a bus that simply doesn’t give the seniors what they need.

“The bus we have isn't very safe. It's costing a lot to repair and if we get eight or nine people in, it gets crowded. We want two people with wheelchairs to be comfortable and it isn't so. We have four or five with walkers that they need and some of the walkers fold up nicely and others don't fold up and it's awkward,” said Walter Pasztetnik, a senior who uses the bus regularly and is also on the committee that’s trying to raise the funds for a new bus.

Pasztetnik also says that once shopping is done, the bus gets crowded and groceries end up on laps and the floor with little room left to move.
The seniors have also had it breakdown while they’ve been using it, which has caused problems as well.

The importance of the bus couldn’t be stressed enough either.

Mary Knutson, another senior who is trying to help raise funds for the bus, says that it’s a lifeline for the seniors at the lodge.
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“We can’t go anywhere without the bus. It’s a lifesaver. When I first came here I was so excited I was going to have independence. We depend on the bus all the way. I want to help our seniors get the bus.”

Pasztetnik says the seniors have been raising funds to purchase a new bus but all of those funds have ended up going towards fixing the current bus instead of purchasing a new one.

“We raise funds and at the end of the time we're lucky to break even after paying for gas and everything else.”

Knutson also feels frustrated with how things are currently going with their bus.

“We are paying out money to fix a bus that's not even fixed when we get it back so that money's gone that could've gone towards a new bus.”

Their search so far has found that the seniors will need at least $130,000 before they can purchase a new bus.

Pasztetnik says they are raising funds anyway they can.

“We are trying to raise funds anyway we can. Picking up cans and recycling, everything counts. Every little bit helps. Families donate as well. We've been trying to raise funds for close to a year now. Hopefully it comes to a point where we can raise more.”
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The purchase of a new bus for the seniors will open doors for the seniors and Knutson says It will be nice to have something they can rely on again.

“There are all these places we can't get to because we haven't got the bus to take us there. When we get a new bus we'll be able to count on it. That's the other thing too. With the bus we have now we can't.”

The other reason a new bus is so important for the seniors is that with the new lodge being in Coleman, the seniors may need to travel further distances to get to appointments.

Pasztetnik says a new bus would alleviate that problem and is just something the seniors now and of the future benefit from.

“It's not just for us; it'll be for the future seniors as well. If we don't have a new bus, we'll be stuck. We really need it.”
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June 19th, 2019 ~ Vol. 89 No. 25
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