Center for Living Independently purchases new van
Tag: Living Independently
The CNMI Center for Living Independently has purchased a brand new, wheelchair-accessible van that will be utilized to carry out the center’s various activities.
In an interview with CLI executive director Susan Satur, CLI was able to purchase the van through a $107,000 local appropriation from the Saipan & Northern Islands Delegation.
Satur said the center wrote a proposal to SNILD and thankfully, they honored it.
“Actually we asked for more, but they’re only able to give us $107,000 which we are most grateful for, and we were able to purchase the van,” she said.
The new van, Satur said, can carry two consumers who have wheelchair needs per trip which is good for not just picking up consumers to bring them to the center, but to transport consumers on field trips.
Satur explained that prior to acquiring the van, they had to coordinate with the Commonwealth Office of Transit Authority to transport its consumers to and from the center at the cost of $3 per trip.
“We are hoping that the new van will lighten up the costing load of paying COTA for transportation. We also have other activities, like we go to the movies and we go around the island, and these activities we could not do unless we coordinate with COTA, and again there will be additional charges. With the new van we will be able to take consumers to wherever they want to go, even to go grocery shopping. Now, we will be able to take those consumers in wheelchairs with us,” she said.
Satur noted that CLI acquired their first 15-seater van about three years ago through SNILD which now is at full capacity.
The center currently has roughly 170 consumers including homebound individuals.
Because there are so many consumers, CLI breaks them up into groups for center access.
“Monday and Wednesday we have one group of consumers; Tuesday and Thursday another group of consumers. Monday to Thursday are training days. Everybody that comes in has a goal and everybody’s goals are different…Some of them want to learn how to cook, some of them want to learn how to keep a house, among other goals. Every Friday everyone gets together and we have socializations. We play games outside and perform different kinds of activities,” she stated.
CLI’s mission is to ensure the rights of people with disabilities to live independently and to be fully integrated in the community.
CLI’s vision is to provide a comprehensive range of services, which make it possible for people with disabilities to live as independently as they choose.