Plug and go: Electric car gifted to Portland health center

Multnomah County

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A Northeast Portland health center recently received a gift that will allow them to further serve communities in the area.

North By Northeast Community Health Center was gifted an electric car and two charging stations. The new Kia will enable them to serve underserved communities with more mobile clinics, equipped with COVID-19 and flu vaccines.

North by Northeast Community Health Center

“We go out to where folks are in the community,” Director Suzy Jeffreys explained. “A lot of folks aren’t necessarily going to feel comfortable walking through a clinic door, so we try to meet folks where they are and where they’re comfortable.”

The organization’s outreach goes beyond medical care — even supplying people with food and money for bills.

North by Northeast is devoted to health equity for the Black community in Portland. That is one of the reasons Pacific Power awarded them an Electric Mobility Grant — giving the organization the car and charging stations.

“We’ve found most communities that are underserved are the last ones to be able to adopt those technologies,” Pacific Power Project Manager Esther Pullido said.

 Pacific Power has also awarded grants for electric tractors and school buses in rural areas.

“As a utility, we found that renewable energy is much more sustainable and affordable for customers,” Pullido explained.

“With the COVID vaccines, we [recently] did 50 at a local church,” Jeffreys said. “I don’t know that any of those folks would have just walked in on a Thursday when we’re doing COVID shots here at the clinic, they were there because they knew someone who goes to the church, or they go to the church or heard about in the neighborhood.”

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