Project CAR

Changing Lives One Car at a Time

How would you live from day to day without a car?  How would you hold a job, feed your family, see your doctor, or go to school?  For many of our neighbors in rural Southern Illinois - through no fault of their own - this is a real and daily struggle.  That's why we at Marion Toyota and Marion Collision Center are proud to announce Project CAR, our newest community service program through which we rehab older vehicles and make them available to the neediest in neighborhoods across our core service counties for just $1.

At Marion Toyota and Marion Collision Center, our team members have the technical expertise, equipment and access to parts so that an otherwise unwanted vehicle can be rehabbed and put back into reliable service for someone who needs it.

Project CAR - Caring Auto Rehab is our joint community initiative that fills the gap and pairs those who have a need with those who can help provide a solution. Because we believe that we're all in this together and we're all neighbors here in southern Illinois, we want to help people for whom car ownership would otherwise be out of reach but who can demonstrate that mobility would significantly dramatically improve their quality of life.

Having read over 200 stories from our first round of applications, we now know the situation is even worse than we thought.  It's not only possible but far too common for people in southern Illinois to lack access to even basic transportation, causing them to lose jobs, fail to receive needed medical treatment, and face great hardship in caring for their children and themselves.  Our first Project CAR award was made possible by a generous, caring couple who wished to turn an old vehicle into a new future for someone in need.  Additional Project CAR awards are waiting only for more generous people to step forward and say, "Yes, let's work together and change more lives!"
How You Can Help

  If now or in the future you have an older car that might be suitable for repair and reconditioning to help a family in need, please contact us to learn how you can partner with Project CAR.

  If you have a car that is not in operating condition but you'd still like for it to benefit the program, contact us to see how it could be salvaged to assist with Project CAR expenses.

  If you don't have a car that you could make available to the program, you can always choose to help with the expense of acquiring and rehabbing vehicles for Project CAR.

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or call 618-364-4820.

1st Project CAR Vehicle Awarded to Teresa Collins

We are proud to announce our very first Project CAR recipient, Teresa Collins. 

Despite having been steadily employed at the same care facility for nearly 20 years, this single mother of seven children had access only to an ancient, failing, unreliable vehicle.  Although she poured every available dollar into constant patches and repairs, she frequently had to walk 3 miles to work regardless of weather, could only grocery shop if someone was able to drive her to the regional store several miles away, and could not safely transport her children or grandchildren. 

Having spent a lifetime putting others' needs before her own, she didn't even nominate herself for this program!  A friend and colleague who knew her remarkable story nominated her, and we're very glad she did. Teresa's life story and character both moved and inspired us.

For all the Marion Toyota and Marion Collision Center associates involved in rehabbing this first Project CAR, it's been a proud, memorable experience.  Tremendous thanks go to the generous couple who donated their car to be repaired and made this first award possible.  We wish Teresa all good things in her newly mobile future.