Hamilton County’s New 513Relief Bus Brings Mobile Services Directly to Neighborhoods

County Commissioners cut the ribbon on the new bus Thursday, Jan. 26 at Corinthian Baptist Church, 1920 Tennessee Avenue. Residents immediately started using the services the bus provides, including health screenings, help applying for public assistance, support for older adults and caregivers, employment connections, financial literacy, career styling, mental health and substance abuse referrals and Covid-19 vaccinations.

Working together, Hamilton County departments and other partner agencies are proactively reaching as many residents as possible with a wide variety of services. The 513Relief Bus removes barriers that might keep residents from seeking help, including accessibility, transportation and technology.

Commission President Alicia Reece invites the whole community to the new bus stops.

“We helped over 4,000 people with our pilot bus in 2021,” said President Reece. “Today, we are announcing the new permanent tech bus that allows Hamilton County to go mobile countywide with health and economic services to help residents. We are using technology to deliver services in what has become a national model.”

“At the onset of the pandemic, we quickly learned there are numerous residents of our county who are hard to reach in traditional ways,” said Commissioner Denise Driehaus. “This gives us the ability to engage people in their own community in a proactive way.” Commissioner Stephanie Summerow Dumas said she’s excited about bringing resources directly to people.

“We can’t expect them to find us,” she said. “We are bringing help to them. That’s important because it shifts the perception away from being just a number to face-to-face interactions that hopefully lead to meaningful support.”

Before the new bus, the county borrowed a bus from UC Health. That bus already helped more than 4,000 people with relief and vaccinations. It visited 28 zip codes in 2021 and took applications for rent, utility and mortgage relief from people living in 50 zip codes.

Introduced by Commissioner Reece and unanimously supported by the board of commissioners, the bus idea was adopted with the support of local civil rights and grassroots leaders, who suggested a one-stop bus to fight Covid-19 and other health and economic disparities.

County Departments that are participating include:

  • Hamilton County Job and Family Services
  • Hamilton County Office of Reentry
  • Hamilton County Public Health
  • Hamilton County Community, Outreach, Recovery and Engagement Program (CORE)

Other organizations participating include:

  • Council on Aging
  • Dress for Success
  • Your Priority Healthcare
  • UC Health
  • Urban League
  • Addition Services Council
  • Talbert House

For more information and the bus schedule, please see 513Relief.org/bus.