A recent post on Facebook alerted us about FISH a very grassroots Wilton organization in need of support–both through donations of money and volunteer hours. FISH, or “Feel I Should Help,” is a network of Wilton volunteers who drive residents without access to transportation–typically elderly and senior Wiltonians–to doctor appointments.
GOOD Morning Wilton asked Sandy Mumbach, the current head of FISH, to write something about what the group is, what their needs are–and direct ways YOU can help. Please consider supporting FISH.
History of FISH:
FISH was started by Suz Seitz in 1976 because she was having trouble finding transportation for her mother to medical appointments. Sandy Mumbach is the current head of FISH and started driving in 1974 and then was a coordinator.
Feel I Should Help (FISH) of Wilton is a great network of volunteer drivers, coordinators. FISH of Wilton is free-of-charge to residents, typically the elderly but open to anyone, who have no other means of transportation, who need to get to medical appointments in area towns. The appointments can include dentists, doctor appointments, podiatrists, chemotherapy, mental and physical therapy, etc. Appointments can be scheduled between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Friday in the following towns: New Canaan, Norwalk, Ridgefield, Darien and Westport.
FISH drivers do not receive reimbursement for gas or mileage (however, expenses are tax deductible).
How FISH works for our clients:
Residents call the FISH answering service (203.834.3737) by 4 p.m. at least 48 hours before their scheduled out-of-town appointment. Clients provide the service with their name, address, phone number, time and duration of appointment, name of doctor and address of the appointment. A day before the appointment, the driver will call the client to confirm the appointment details and find out if the client has any special needs (e.g., a walker). Residents can use Dial-A-Ride for appointments within Wilton. Please note that our drivers are not available to drive wheelchair-bound residents.
Are you interested in volunteering? We are looking for scheduled drivers, substitute drivers and coordinators.
Here’s where we need help: We would love to expand our FISH services to five days a week as we see a need within our community. However, we do not have enough drivers to meet our current three day a week schedule. We are reaching out to our community for help.
We are always looking for more full-time and substitute drivers, so that no driver is asked to drive too often. We want to make volunteering easy and convenient.
- Scheduled drivers commit to driving one time a month or even less! For example, a scheduled driver may pick the first Monday of each month or maybe every other month.
- Substitute drivers are only contacted if we do not have enough drivers for our Monday, Wednesday or Friday appointments. Everyone is busy and many subs have listed their time restraints (e.g., no Mondays or Wednesday’s only). Being on the sub list does not mean you must drive when you’re contacted. If you have a commitment, no problem, we will try another sub!
- Currently, coordinators are rotated and are on twice for two weeks in a six month period (that’s only four times a year — not a huge commitment!). Additionally, we are looking for a new treasurer.
For more information about our great group of FISH volunteers, please contact Sandy Mumbach at 203.762.9246.
Would you like to make a contribution?
FISH is a volunteer organization but does have expenses (e.g., the phone service, state filings etc). Contributions are greatly appreciated. Wilton Kiwanis and the Wilton Woman’s Club have been regular generous supporters, but additional funds are needed. Please consider sending a tax-free donation, payable to FISH of Wilton to:
74 Hurlbutt Street
Wilton, CT 06897
Pictured above: (L to R) FISH Volunteers Sarah Conklin, chair Sandy Mumbach, and Peter Mumbach.