Lenci currently lives in Baltimore City, is an employee of Sinai hospital and the father of a fifteen-year-old son. While Lenci lives approximately twelve miles away from work, his average commute ranges from an hour and a half to two hours by bus. Life without a car not only affected Lenci, but also his son. Relying on public transportation meant that Lenci and his son were subjected to the weather, bus routes being shut down, and in some cases, violence. Without having transportation of his own, it was also difficult for Lenci's son to participate in after-school sports and activities.
With his new 2000 Saturn Station Wagon from Vehicles for Change, Lenci now looks forward to a 20-minute commute to-and-from work every morning. With his VFC car, Lenci stated that he will have more time to prepare for work in the morning. In Lenci’s words, his new car makes him feel “like a kid in a...Continue Reading
Beatrice was born and raised in Baltimore City. She works for Personal Home Care, with one job in Catonsville and another in Baltimore City. These commutes made relying on public transportation difficult, as buses were often crowded, delayed and made multiple stops along her route to work. Traveling by bus took Beatrice an hour and a half to get to Catonsville. Beatrice is also a mother to seven-year-old, Walter. When commuting by bus, Beatrice made one stop to drop off Walter at school, then caught another two buses to work. Commuting by bus often caused Beatrice to arrive home after her son had already fallen asleep.
Beatrice also struggled with getting to the grocery store, carrying her shopping bags on her commute and missing doctor’s appointments due to late and delayed buses. While public transportation caused Beatrice troubles in carrying out daily chores, it also affected her...Continue Reading
Monique is a working mother to two daughters and one son. Originally from Washington D.C., Monique now resides in Lansdowne. However, Monique’s job is 40 miles away in Rockville. For Monique, getting to work without a car meant trying to catch rides with friends or take Lyfts. Monique’s commute to work usually took more than 45 minutes. With three kids, Monique also made stops dropping off her children at school and daycare in the morning, as well as picking them back up after work. Along with taking care of her three children, Monique also takes her cousin to his dialysis appointments three times a week. Owning her own car would make getting to and from these appointments much smoother. Without a car, Monique and her children had to find ways to get to the grocery store and do laundry. It was also difficult for Monique and her children to visit their relatives in D.C. as much as they...Continue Reading
Lorelle C. is a hard-working mother of two daughters, Dylan and Khayla, aged 7 and 21. Originally raised in West Baltimore, Lorelle now resides in Columbia, Maryland. Even though Lorelle lives in Howard County, she works in the city at the Baltimore City Health Department. Without a car, this meant that Lorelle’s commute could last up to two hours. Additionally, other stops on her route included dropping off her daughter to daycare in the morning and picking her back up in the afternoon. Lorelle relied on taking the bus and occasionally catching a ride from friends or family, even to the grocery store. Lorelle stated that she also struggled with not receiving invites to events and family gatherings due to her need for car rides.
After receiving her 2003 Subaru Forester through our Car Award program, Lorelle stated that owning a car will grant her newfound independence. Lorelle...Continue Reading
Lacey is a hard-working single mother of three children aged 11, 9, and 8 years old. She currently lives with her beautiful family in Pasadena, Maryland. Without a car of her own, Lacey has to rely on friends and family to drive to her job at Holts Construction. If she is unable to find a ride, then she must commute by bus, doubling the time it takes to get to work. Lacey found it difficult always having to be dependent on others’ schedules. But, more importantly, she struggled to spend quality time with her children such as simple outings, like the park or the local mall. Not having a car impeded her ability to schedule routine doctor’s appointments for herself and her family.
Now that she has her car award from VFC, a 2008 yellow Hyundai Accent, Lacey no longer has to worry about depending on others to help her get to work on time! Lacey is looking forward to having more job...Continue Reading
Angela is a native New Yorker who has recently moved to East Baltimore with her two-year-old son and her four-year-old daughter. Without a car of her own, Angela had to rely solely on Baltimore’s public transportation, often having to take two or more buses to get to work each day. She always worried about them arriving on time, if they ever arrived at all. Her entire commute took at least an hour, whereas it would take only 15 minutes by car. Every day, Angela had to walk her daughter to her school’s bus stop, then walk with her son for a mile just to take him to school.
Now, after receiving her low-cost car from Vehicles for Change, Angela can finally devote her time equally to both her children and her job. Additionally, having a vehicle of her own allows her to search for better employment opportunities further away from her home. She also plans on taking a family trip to the beach ...Continue Reading
Originally born in East Africa, Helen moved to the DMV area at a young age where she now raises her 12-year-old daughter. Life as a single working parent is no easy path to travel, especially when there is no affordable source of reliable transportation. Without a vehicle of her own, traveling to her job at the Department of Social Services in Prince George’s County was always a challenge. In order to get to work on time, Helen had to spend an average of $200 a week renting a car. Between the time it took to reserve the car to taking time off from work in order to return it, Helen found herself stretched thin as she tried to balance a healthy home and work life. She explained, “If there was ever an emergency with my daughter, I had to ask friends to get her from school. As a parent, you want to provide a sense of security, which causes me a lot of stress and anxiety.” She confessed...Continue Reading
Ameena is a hard-working mother of two beautiful girls, ages 8 and 5. Currently, Ameena works at a cemetery in Suitland Maryland as a sales counselor. Without her own transportation, Ameena used 3 buses to get her daughters to school and herself to work. However, the commute ended up amounting to 2.5 hours each way. “If I left work at 5:00 PM, my daughters and I wouldn’t get home until 7:30 PM,” she said.
With winter weather fast approaching, Ameena became concerned for her daughters’ health and opted to begin taking ride-sharing services. However, the costs quickly became too high, resulting in Ameena having to rent a car each week. “It felt like I was going to work just to be able to afford the drive to work!” With her exorbitant commuting costs, Ameena’s biggest struggle became not being able to save money. “I want to go back to school, but I can’t save up enough right now.”
With her ...Continue Reading
Born and raised in Baltimore, Sean currently works for the Baltimore County Public School System. His daily commute consists of two separate bus rides that can take up to an hour each way – something that is often troublesome for Sean, especially when trying to get his five-year-old son to school on time.
Without his own vehicle, Sean has found it challenging to successfully manage his responsibilities as a father. Sean wants to ensure his son gets to school and doctor’s visits on time while making sure he stays on time himself.
Now that Sean has the keys to his new Mazda, he feels like a new man. He feels as though he has more control over his life again. Sean can now take care of his responsibilities the way he would like to while helping eliminate some of the burden off of his son’s mother. Sean cannot wait to see what he can achieve with his new wheels. Sean would like to thank VFC...Continue Reading
Towanda is a traveling merchandiser whose commute to work is four hours one way. Due to the fact that she does not have her own vehicle, Towanda regularly rents cars to help her get to work which is a huge cost burden on her and her family. “It’s almost as if I’m working just to pay for my rental car,” she says.
Because her job requires such far travel, Towanda leaves a day in advance to ensure she gets to work on time. This means Towanda must leave her two young daughters (9 and 10-years-old) with their grandmother while she is away at work.
While her work schedule will not change, with her newly-awarded Rav-4, Towanda will finally be able to save her hard-earned money. She is also looking forward to getting her girls involved with after-school activities and traveling on the weekends. “Due to the high cost of the rental car, I would never keep it on the weekends, so we were generally...Continue Reading