Eastern Area Agency on Aging could get free Toyota if it gets enough online votes Tuesday

Posted June 25, 2012, at 7:42 p.m.

BANGOR, Maine — For seniors and adults with disabilities, getting to and from doctor’s appointments can be difficult, especially in rural areas such as Washington County, where little is available in terms of handicapped-accessible public transportation.

That’s why Eastern Area Agency on Aging executive director Noelle Merrill decided to enter the nonprofit group in Toyota’s 2012 Cars for Good program, Carol Higgins Taylor, the agency’s spokeswoman, said Monday.

Taylor said that the agency, which serves the elderly in Penobscot, Piscataquis, Hancock and Washington counties, recently learned that it has been named one of 500 finalists selected from more than 4,000 applications nationwide.

During the program, which got under way last month, Toyota is giving away 100 vehicles to 100 nonprofit organizations over the course of 100 days. Each day, five finalists will be profiled at www.100carsforgood.com.

The public is invited to vote for whichever nonprofit they think can do the most good with a new vehicle, Taylor said. The nonprofit with the most votes at the end of each day will win one of six Toyota models as well as a six-year, 100,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Eastern Area Agency on Aging — which has its eye on a Toyota Sienna mobility van — is up for consideration on Tuesday, Taylor said.

“We’re grateful for this incredible opportunity to showcase programs and hopefully win a car to help us increase our impact in Washington County,”

Merrill said in a news release about the contest issued earlier this month.

“We hope everyone will help us spread the word now and, of course, will make time to visit www.100carsforgood.com on June 26 to vote for us,” she said, adding, “A new vehicle would really be a game changer for our ability to help seniors and adults with disabilities get to medical appointments.”

On Monday, Taylor said that the agency’s effort to win a van got a boost from Ally Scott, an intern from the New England School of Communications who was known as Ally Booker until her June 16 wedding.

Working on short notice, Scott, who since has been hired part time by the agency, put together a 10-minute video that was required of finalists, Taylor said.

For information on the agency’s efforts to win a van, visit its website at www.eaaa.org. For information on 100 Cars for Good and profiles of all 500 finalists, go to www.100carsforgood.com.

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