Volunteers are needed to drive area Veterans to their VA appointments. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center in Tomah utilizes volunteers to help Veterans travel to their medical appointments and this service is expanding.  Additional volunteers are needed to serve Veterans in and around the Tomah area. You do not have to be a Veteran or belong to a Veterans’ organization to be a VA volunteer driver.  All you “need” is to be a caring individual who has some time to give and who wants to make a difference by helping others.  This is your opportunity to give back to our nation’s Veterans.  You can help as often as you like.  It could be dedicating one day a week or one day a month or being on an “on call” list and not having a set schedule at all.  Some routes can be accomplished in as little as four hours, so time commitments may vary.  Every little bit helps and the reward in knowing that you have helped our Veterans is powerful. Volunteer drivers do have to meet certain physical standards and pass a physical that is provided at the VA in Tomah at no charge to the volunteer.  During the visit to Tomah for the physical, the volunteer can complete the other necessary procedures to become a VA volunteer:  background check, tuberculin (TB) skin test, and attend an orientation.  All efforts will be made to accommodate a volunteer’s schedule and to schedule as many on-boarding activities as possible into one visit. In addition to operating vans and automobiles in the VA’s transportation pool, volunteers are needed to drive the facility’s new wheelchair-accessible vans so that Veterans in wheelchairs can more easily access their care at the VA. For more information or to start the process, please call VA Voluntary Service at (608) 372-1727.

 

Contributed by Julie Sherman