Fresno auto repair shops look for next Wheels of Hope candidate

Ten Fresno auto repair shops are turning their wrenches to get the next "Wheels of Hope" car ready for a new owner.
December 9, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
Ten auto repair shops in Fresno are turning their wrenches to get the next "Wheels of Hope" car ready for a new owner. Rachel Cruz says her life changed for the better since getting a new ride in the Wheels of Hope giveaway.

"I don't have to get up early to go to work, I don't have to call people for rides," Cruz said.

Cruz said she is now able to increase her work hours because of the reliable transportation. She is also able to take her wheelchair bound mother to doctor's appointments.

"Carrying the wheelchair in taxis and stuff like that is really hard and waiting for the handicap bus was even more strenuous on us," Cruz said.

This year's giveaway marks the seventh car that Wheels of Hope have given away since it started its program five years ago. Rusty Rasmussen of Rasmussen Auto Repair says Fresno select group is looking forward to giving away another car and they are currently accepting applications.

"Someone that really struggle with getting those daily things done, getting to and from work, getting kids to and from school, getting to the grocery store getting to doctor's appointments, those sort of things," Rasmussen said.

Like Rachel Cruz, the applicants must be nominated by a friend or family member to be considered. A gesture that Rachel says she's forever grateful to her family. And now she uses her car to pay it forward.

"And if family members need a ride I am there for them like they were there for me," Cruz said.

The wheels of hope program is run by the repair shops involved in Fresno Select Group and they are always keeping an eye out for the next set of wheels they can refurbish for someone in need.

The deadline to nominate someone for Wheels of Hope is this Friday.

Click here for a list of locations where you can pick up an application.


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