The Widespread BENEFITS of Car Donation
Your car donation helps low-income families and is a great way to make a difference in someone’s life. The benefits of car ownership span a wide range of daily activities and can have a positive impact on working families. When you work with Vehicles for Change for car donations, you help eligible families in your community improve their economic status, health, and overall quality of life.
The expansive effect car ownership has on the lives of families illustrates that Vehicles for Change is much more than your average charity; it is a long-term solution that gives autonomy and opportunity to low-income families.
Donate a Car Instead of Money
While many people might choose to donate money to charitable organizations as a way to help those in need, car donation can actually help families more than simply donating money. By donating a car, you are providing a family with the tools they need to earn more money and better their circumstances in the long term.
A car is a tool that allows families to gain control over their employment and ultimately improve their financial situation. Donating money might help someone in the short term, but low-income families need more than a Band-Aid; they need long-term solutions that give them autonomy and access to better employment opportunities.
Car Donation Provides Affordable Vehicles
Vehicles for Change is an organization that takes donated vehicles and refurbishes them before selling them at affordable prices for low-income families. Your vehicle could provide an affordable mode of transportation for a family in need. Vehicles for Change sells your donated and refurbished car for as little as $750. Vehicles for Change is unique because it also employs eligible workers interested in gaining skills in automotive repair, effectively enabling the organization to provide refurbished vehicles at lower costs than if they outsourced the labor. Donating a vehicle is an important step in improving lives of families in your community.
Families Gain Access to Jobs
Vehicle ownership allows working families to gain access to more job opportunities because they can reasonably reach more job locations. For individuals who are unemployed or underemployed, owning a vehicle can make all the difference.
When working individuals rely on public transportation, their choices for employment are reduced to those accessible by public transit. When no public transit is available, as is the case in many smaller communities, people are forced to walk long distances to reach their jobs. Some might not be able to work at all if they are unable to find a job within reasonable walking distance.
Your car donation allows individuals and family members to cast a wider net in their job search, improving the odds of gaining substantial employment. When working individuals can apply to jobs without transportation limitations, they can ensure they not only find a place to work, but will often have more choices in the jobs they can take.
This means they can accept jobs that fit their schedule and allow them to earn more money instead of taking the only job available in their neighborhood. A recent study performed by Vehicles for Change showed that 75% of participants found better jobs and/or increased wages within the first year of owning their car.
Car Access Makes for Short Commutes
Owning a vehicle also impacts commute times. Relying on public transit or walking to work can mean long commutes – as much as four hours each day. This means your 8-hour workday turns into 12 or more hours with only an 8-hour wage. Individuals with vehicle access shortened their commute times by an average of 90 minutes a day.
Public transportation isn’t always reliable, so workers are often late to work. This not only can prevent promotions in the workplace but can even cost employees their job. Vehicles for Change’s analysis of the impact car ownership has on families showed 75% of recipients missed fewer days of work in the first year after buying their affordable car.
Families without cars must consider their children’s commute to school. Even when families purposefully move to areas near their children’s schools once they continue on to the next grade, they may not be within walking distance of their new school. Car donations cut down on commute time and allow families to get to work and school on time.
Families Boost Income
In addition to cutting down on commute times and gaining employment opportunity, working individuals also experience a marked increase in earnings through vehicle ownership. Vehicles for Change has documented a $7,000 average annual increase in earning for family participants in the car donation program.
By having a reliable form of transportation, working individuals can get to work on time and take on extra shifts, which ultimately leads to promotions and higher earning potential. Participants who experience this increase in earnings show clear evidence that car donation programs allow for long-term life improvement for working individuals and families.
Vehicles Help Access Healthcare
Family life related to health is also influenced by car ownership. When families do not have access to a working vehicle, routine checkups are simply not feasible. Long commutes and lack of transportation to and from the doctor can cause families to postpone important medical appointments, which often forces them to use emergency transport for simple illnesses.
The high cost of emergency services puts these families in even more financial stress and instability. About 98% of families benefiting from Vehicles for Change’s program took their children to the doctor in the first year, helping maintain family health. Car donations can positively impact the health of low-income families.
Car Donation Provides Access to Fresher Food
Another way vehicle ownership has an impact on health is through food access. Many families living in cities do not have access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Corner stores and other sources of prepackaged and fast food are much more prevalent in low-income areas than fresh produce and whole food markets.
Lack of nutritious foods negatively affects childhood development and can lead to a wide range of illnesses and diseases. Car donations provide transportation access, which means families can drive to grocery stores that sell produce. They are also able to buy in bulk to save money, an impossible task when carrying groceries by hand. Fresh foods will improve health and save money for working families, and car donations to Vehicles for Change can help make this a reality.
Kids Benefit with a Family Car
After-school and extracurricular activities are out of reach for many kids of working families without car access. Through the Vehicles for Change car donation program, 100% of recipients were able to take their children to after-school activities within the first year. The impact this has on childhood development and socialization has been readily documented: 87% of families took their children to athletics, art, or music activities.
Extracurricular activities help children grow both physically and emotionally. 55% of families took their children to volunteer opportunities, providing children a way to give back to the community while gaining valuable experience helpful to applying for college. Vehicle access gives children from low-income backgrounds the chance they deserve to do well in school and the potential to go to college.
Owning a Car Leads to Independence
The most important benefit of car ownership is autonomy. Vehicle donations to Vehicles for Change allow eligible families to gain independence through improved employment, earnings, and health. Healthy families with access to jobs can take control of their lives and work to recover their financial situation. Working families are not looking for handouts; they are looking for a fair shot and long-term solutions. Your car donation will help a family in need in your community.