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North Hollywood : Vans Aid Senior Center’s Services

Senior citizens are flocking to the East Valley Multipurpose Senior Center in North Hollywood these days, center officials say.

The center recently received two new vans, paid for by the state Department of Transportation, that provide an affordable, convenient shuttle service for senior citizens in the area.

“It’s terrific,” said Howard Segal, transportation coordinator at the center. “We can bring more and more people in for different classes, for doctors’ appointments, to see podiatrists, nutritionists. We had 200 people in here on Monday for flu shots!” Segal said, adding that the vans are fast becoming popular with the center’s patrons.

The two American-made vans are worth about $77,000. Both vehicles are equipped with hydraulic wheelchair lifts to transport disabled members.

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Rides in the East Valley area cost only 50 cents each way. Rides outside the region cost $1 each way, Segal said. But, he added, the rules aren’t as strict as the MTA’s. “If someone just doesn’t have the money to pay, I don’t think we’ll be refusing to take them.”

Before the first of the two vans arrived at the center several months ago, volunteers used their own cars to shuttle seniors to appointments.

“We weren’t always able to bring people here because we had to prioritize,” Segal said. “We did medical trips first, and other trips as we had the time. Now we can really open up this center, offer more classes, get seniors out of their homes and bring them in here,” he said.

For more information, call the center at (818) 766-5165. The East Valley Multipurpose Senior Center is located at 5000 Colfax Ave. in North Hollywood.

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