Local charity finalist in Toyota contest

By Ava Wilhite

Charleston, S.C. (WCIV) -- A{} Lowcountry non-profit that gives rides to senior citizens and the visually impaired is working to get a new car.

All of the cars in iTN Charleston Trident's fleet are donated and the group is hoping for a vehicle that can compete with rising gas prices.

Twice a week, Air Force veteran Michael Lycette is picked up by a volunteer who takes him where he needs to go.

"In '09 I was diagnosed with what's called vascular dementia. [It's] kind of like early onset Alzheimer's, so my doctors advised me not to drive anymore," he said. {}

Shortly after his diagnosis, Lycette discovered{} iTN, a dignified transportation service for seniors and the visually impaired.

"It allows me to go on Wednesday over to the church. It allows me to go over to the other church and volunteer for the folks as well," he said.

"We provide the service that can help them stay connected and stay a part of their community," Kim Thornton, who works for the non-profit.

She said Lycette is one of 634 member riders in the county.

Thornton said iTN's{} fleet of donated cars includes a 1997 Avalon but she said it needs to be replaced with more fuel-efficient cars like the Toyota Prius.{}

"Toyota is giving away 100 cars to non-profit organizations throughout the nation. Currently there are 250 finalists- two of them in South Carolina," she said. {}

iTN is one of the finalists that needs Facebook votes to win the new car.

"Because of gas prices it would be great to have something a little more economical," said Thornton.

Voters can go to to vote.

You must have a Facebook profile to vote.

Voting ends October 6 at midnight.{}

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