|Evan De Groot grabs a bag of cans out of the collection|
bin next to Promise's downtown Sioux Center building.
He operates the can collection program as a volunteer
to help pay for patient rides to the health center.
SIOUX CENTER – Evan De Groot often noticed that transportation was a need for some people coming to Promise Community Health Center.
They didn’t have the money to pay for a ride.
So the rural Sioux Center man decided to do something about it.
About two years ago, De Groot launched a can and bottle collection program to raise money for patient rides to the health center. The bin is located along the south side of Promise’s building at 338 First Ave. NW in downtown Sioux Center.
“Sometimes when you do a little thing for somebody, that helps them a lot,” he said.
De Groot, 48, who also has served on the Promise Board of Directors since shortly after the health center opened in 2008, handles all aspects of the fundraiser. He removes the cans and bottles from the bin, sorts them and redeems them.
He then gives the proceeds generated from the 5-cent can and bottle deposits to Promise to go toward paying patient fares through RIDES, the regional transit authority.
“It’s not a lot of money, but I figured it helps one or two people per month who would have a hard time getting here,” he said.
De Groot started coming in to Promise for his health services soon after it was established because he had bad allergies. The medical providers convinced him to have surgery to improve his sinus problems.
He appreciated the personal service that he received at Promise.
“I felt a little more comfortable coming here,” he said. “I like the concept of it. The hospitals are big and impersonal. I like the concept of medical dollars going here where it helps everyone out.”
That led to his service on the Promise board. De Groot was in the waiting room one day when then board president Melissa O’Rourke came in. She suggested that he should serve on the board.
So he did.
“I’ve been here ever since,” De Groot said.
Promise Community Health Center is the only Federally Qualified Health Center in the far northwest corner of Iowa. To learn more, visit www.promisechc.org.