RIDE UNITED NC Launches To Help Underserved Communities Get To COVID-19 Vaccine Appointments Statewide
United Way of the Greater Triangle, in partnership with Lyft, announced today the launch of RIDE UNITED NC, a statewide campaign designed to remove transportation barriers for low-income North Carolina residents who are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The campaign has a goal of providing 100,000 roundtrip rides across all 100 North Carolina counties and is currently accepting donations to support efforts. Click the button below to contribute:
“Everyone needs access to the vaccine if we are going to end this pandemic. That’s especially true for communities of color, seniors, uninsured individuals, and other vulnerable populations that are facing greater impacts from COVID-19,” said Eric Guckian, United Way of the Greater Triangle’s President and CEO. “RIDE UNITED NC is literally the opportunity to work in partnership with our community to save lives. United Way of the Greater Triangle is so proud to join Blue Cross NC and many other partners to ensure that thousands of North Carolinians can access the vaccine through a safe and simple Lyft ride. We’re honored and humbled for the opportunity to continue to rise up as we continue to respond and recover from this crisis.”
The launch of RIDE UNITED NC is made possible by initial investments totaling more than $400,000 from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (Blue Cross NC), Duke Energy, Coastal Credit Union, and North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT).
“As a continuation of our COVID-19 support, we are proud to support the RIDE UNITED NC program to help with a successful vaccine rollout to underserved communities in all 100 North Carolina counties,” said Stephen De May, Duke Energy’s North Carolina President.
“Our mission is helping people bank better to live better, and often times that means finding and removing people’s barriers to financial well-being. In this instance, we have an opportunity to team up with United Way, Lyft, and other great business partners to help remove a barrier to people’s physical well-being. For that reason, Coastal Credit Union Foundation is proud to sponsor the RIDE UNITED NC initiative, and to help North Carolina get a few steps closer to vaccinating everyone who wants to be,” shared Creighton Blackwell, Chief Culture & Impact Officer at Coastal Credit Union.
Beginning in mid-April, RIDE UNITED NC will connect eligible individuals who already have a vaccine appointment to roundtrip transportation through local nonprofits and a dedicated call center. These resources will help educate individuals about the science behind the COVID-19 vaccine and support individuals experiencing a range of barriers including lack of access to the Lyft rideshare technology, bank accounts, and more.
“Now more than ever, we need to think differently about the health care needs of our underserved communities,” said Cheryl Parquet, Director of Community Engagement and Marketing Activation at Blue Cross NC. “And that means meeting them where they are and eliminating barriers to care, like transportation.”
For more information, or to learn how to contribute, go to www.unitedwaytriangle.org/rideunitednc.