TRIP for Riverside County California is a special self-directed, mileage reimbursement transportation service that complements public transportation by encouraging volunteer friends and neighbors to transport older adults and people with disabilities to access medical services and for other purposes where no transit service exists or when the individual is too frail, ill, or unable to use public transportation for other reasons.
The TRIP model was designed as a low-cost, low-maintenance, rider-focused approach to provide transportation for unserved and underserved, transit dependent older adults, persons with disabilities and other difficult to serve populations. Originally, TRIP was the outcome of a collaborative partnership between the Independent Living Partnership, sponsor of TRIP, the local Area Agency on Aging, and the Riverside County Transportation Commission in California.
TRIP began providing transportation assistance for older adults and people with disabilities through-out Riverside County in 1993. The efficiency and effectiveness of the TRIP Model has been proven in cities, suburban, and rural areas. So far the program has provided over 26.2 million miles of assisted travel and more than a 1.99 million free, escorted trips for 13,000+ Riverside County passengers with more than 1,000 volunteer drivers each year. TRIP continues to be funded by the Riverside County Transportation Commission, the Riverside County Office on Aging, Federal transportation grants, foundations, and with support from cities that want service focused on their residents’ needs.
Innovative passenger friendly service characteristics include:
- Passengers are enabled choose and recruit their own volunteer drivers from friends and neighbors they know and trust
- Volunteer drivers receive mileage reimbursement payments through the passenger
- Rides are scheduled by passengers and volunteer drivers, as mutually convenient
- Transportation is provided in personal volunteer driver’s vehicles
- 24/7 transportation is available, as agreeable between riders and volunteers
- Travel can be provided to other cities or even outside the county, if needed
- Rides are free to passengers.
Each month, more than 10,000 trips are provided for Riverside County residents who would not have been able to travel to access needed services or for quality of life purposes. In 2009 TRIP was named by The Beverly Foundation as “the best volunteer driver model in the nation”. Also received 2012 STAR AWARD for Excellence.