Blessed Assurance Adult Day Care needed the community’s help to win a handicap-accessible van – and they got it.
The Mint Hill nonprofit garnered enough online votes last week to win the van during Toyota’s 2012 100 Cars for Good contest. Each year, Toyota chooses 100 nonprofits nationwide to receive a free vehicle that suits the organization’s needs. Blessed Assurance went head-to-head with four other worthy contestants: Westside Family Healthcare of Wilmington, Del.; Brevard Achievement Center of Rockledge, Fla.; Mission Road Developmental Center of San Antonio, Texas; and Yuut-Elitnaurviat-The People’s Learning Center of Bethel, Ark.
While Toyota won’t say how many votes the nonprofit received, they secured at least 33 percent of the vote. Their closest competitor had 25 percent of the vote, Nate Huggins, CEO of Blessed Assurance, said.
“I want to say ‘thank you’ to everyone who supported disabled veterans, seniors and the special needs adult population by voting,” Huggins said. “I just really appreciate their loyalty and support of our program. It was just a blessing that people came together.”
Blessed Assurance gets to specify the model and color of van they want. Huggins is requesting a silver Sierra. Delivery of the $40,000 vehicle could take up to six months, he said. And he can hardly wait.
“We have people in wheelchairs and we can’t take them out on special outings with our other clients,” he said. “Do you know what a joy it will be for a 90-year-old woman to sit among friends and go to a nice restaurant for a meal? That’ll be awesome.”
Blessed Assurance sees clients with a wide range of backgrounds and conditions, including physical and mental disabilities, dementia, Parkinson’s disease, diabetes, stroke-related issues and conditions related to brain injuries. Huggins said the center currently serves people as young as 35 and as old as 99.