By Kimberly Pistone
For the Sidney Daily News
SIDNEY – Grace Mobility is a new van rental service for people needing a wheelchair-accessible van. Unlike most van rentals, Grace Mobility will rent by the hour, providing more flexibility as well as a more cost-effective option for families in need.
The idea for Grace Mobility came to owner Evelyn Smith after she was involved in a car crash that left her paralyzed. After her release from the hospital, she found getting places to be very frustrating. Sometimes the available services would make her late for an appointment or keep her stranded at a location before they were able to return and pick her up. She discovered that renting a wheelchair-accessible van could be cost-prohibitive because they could only rent for a full day, and often she only needed the van for a few hours.
Smith’s vision for Grace Mobility is for people to have the ability to locally rent a wheelchair-accessible van for a short time, enabling people to be able to get together easier with their families, or rent the van to do simple things like go to church, or a restaurant or a movie. Their slogan is “Embrace the possibilities with Grace Mobility.”
“I know how blessed I am to have a vehicle. What if someone doesn’t? I want them to have choices. I know that something like this can make someone’s day and help with healing and recovery,” Smith said.
Anyone who is over 21 years of age with a valid driver’s license and full coverage insurance can rent the van after signing a rental contract. The van has a standard 28-inch side ramp. The wheelchair goes up the ramp, then turns and is latched in by the driver’s seat. Smith’s son and co-owner of Grace Mobility, William Savage, will be available to help secure the wheelchair safely into the van and go over safety. The cost for rental will vary depending on the amount of time and distance it is needed. Appointments can be made by calling 740-978-3713.