The van that shows up every few weeks is an important part of Norman Dalke’s life.
It takes him to doctors’ appointments, to pick up groceries and, most importantly, for his haircut every three weeks.
The van is one of the services provided by Compassionate Hands, a Yukon-based organization that helps those in need.
Dalke is one of dozens of people who utilize the van service, which provides rides throughout the Oklahoma City metro area for a relatively small fee.
“I use their van to get me to different places,” Dalke, who is visually impaired, said.
Dalke uses the services a few times each month. Sometimes, it is a short trip down the street to get his hair cut. Other times, it is to make a doctor’s appointment in Oklahoma City or a dentist appointment in El Reno.
“I need a ride from somebody, somehow. I’m not well located for a blind person. I’m a half-mile from anywhere. I depend on the service quite a lot,” he said.
Trips around Yukon cost him $1, while round trips to Oklahoma City, El Reno or even Edmond cost $5.
“It is very reasonable,” he said.
Compassionate Hands provides the van rides as a service to the community. However, those services come with a cost.
Compassionate Hands director Joanne Riley said the van travels about 35,000 miles per year.
In addition to the van service, Riley said Compassionate Hands also has a service to help residents who are struggling to pay bills. However, that service is limited.
Compassionate hands was created in 1994 by the Yukon Ministerial Alliance as a one-stop source for charity services, rather than having those seeking donations go from church to church.
Last year, more than 300 families received assistance through Compassionate Hands. That includes more than 600 people.
The amount that is given is based on family size and income.
Compassionate Hands operates on grants, donations and fundraisers.
The next major fundraiser will be Friday
The Yukon Masonic Lodge will host a spaghetti supper from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at its lodge, 1201 E. Main St. Proceeds from the event will be donated to Compassionate Hands.
Tickets for the event are $5 for all-you-can-eat spaghetti, salad and a drink. Desserts will be available for an additional $1.
Tickets can be purchased in advance from Compassionate Hands, 119 S. Sixth St. Tickets also will be available at the door.
In addition, the organization is raffling a $300 gift card. Tickets for that also can be purchased in advance from Compassionate Hands.