New adult day care program bus is in operation at the Chemainus Health Care Centre. From left: Foundation board member John Marriott, Denise Stanton, Sam Miiller and Jennifer Thompson. (Photo by Don Bodger)

New adult day care program bus is in operation at the Chemainus Health Care Centre. From left: Foundation board member John Marriott, Denise Stanton, Sam Miiller and Jennifer Thompson. (Photo by Don Bodger)

New bus for Chemainus Health Care Centre’s adult day program

Foundation purchase from donations meets ever-expanding needs

The previous bus served its purpose for the Chemainus Health Care Centre’s adult day program, but it was definitely time for a new one.

The Chemainus Health Care Foundation recently purchased a new bus for $103,460 to transport clients to and from the day program.

“It’s already being used,” said Paul Edwards, a new member of the Foundation board doing public relations. “It’s allowing people to get out of their homes and into the daylight day program.”

The original nine-seater bus, donated in 2007 by the Foundation, became inadequate for the increased numbers and the needs of the clients utilizing the service.

“The reason why we had to get this one, they increased the capacity of the adult day care,” said board member John Marriott, who worked together with the adult day program personnel to consider all facets of the new bus purchase – including capacity, equipment, safety features and adaptability.

The new bus can accommodate 20 passengers.

“If you don’t use the wheelchairs, they flop down and it gives you four more seats,” Marriott explained.

Western Canada Bus from Edmonton was chosen from the quotes Marriott received from bus manufacturers. The bus was built in Michigan and driven to B.C. and delivered to the Centre in August.

After delivery, it became apparent a running board was needed and Western kicked in for the cost. Lifetimer Boats in Duncan fabricated and installed it while Leon Signs did the logos on the bus.

The day program provides much needed socialization to combat isolation, especially important during these times, and respite for families. Activities like exercise, chair yoga, cooking, baking, crafts, gardening, games and excursions are part of the program and a nutritional lunch is served.

With the new bus, there is room for 12 clients and their wheelchairs and walkers and the bus goes as far as Ladysmith for pick-up and drop-off. COVID-19 restricted the program activities from March until October, but is back in service and well received by all.

Related story: Chemainus Health Care Foundation supports Cowichan Hospice House with $100,000 contribution

The Foundation is grateful to the community for helping to sustain health care supports in the community. Donations are always welcome.

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Beautiful new bus is meeting the needs of adult day program clients at the Chemainus Health Care Centre, purchased by the Chemainus Health Care Foundation. From left: John Marriott, Denise Stanton, Sam Miiller and Jennifer Thompson. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Beautiful new bus is meeting the needs of adult day program clients at the Chemainus Health Care Centre, purchased by the Chemainus Health Care Foundation. From left: John Marriott, Denise Stanton, Sam Miiller and Jennifer Thompson. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Clients and staff alike are enjoying the new bus for the adult day program at the Chemainus Health Care Centre. From left: Denise Stanton, John Marriott, Sam Miiller and Jennifer Thompson. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Clients and staff alike are enjoying the new bus for the adult day program at the Chemainus Health Care Centre. From left: Denise Stanton, John Marriott, Sam Miiller and Jennifer Thompson. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Chemainus Health Care Foundation’s Helen Fowler checks out the interior of the new bus. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Chemainus Health Care Foundation’s Helen Fowler checks out the interior of the new bus. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Sam Miiller pulls out of the parking lot in the new Chemainus Health Care Centre adult day program’s bus. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Sam Miiller pulls out of the parking lot in the new Chemainus Health Care Centre adult day program’s bus. (Photo by Don Bodger)