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By 2022-03-07March 9th, 2020News

The Illawarra Community Foundation using funds raised from the i98 Illawarra Convoy has donated $54,000 to the Illawarra Cancer Carers which will help offset the cost of reimbursing volunteer drivers’ fuel expenses.

The Illawarra Cancer Carers do tremendous work within the community for cancer patients, and local hospitals. This patient transport program is vital for so many patients across the Illawarra and we are proud to carry on Al Doherty’s legacy by supporting this program, said Convoy founder Marty Haynes.

This isn’t the first time Convoy have assisted the Illawarra Cancer Carers. In 2017 the group also assisted in applying for portable bladder scanners for Port Kembla Palliative Care ward, which was also funded by Illawarra Community Foundation.

“For over 30 years this service been provided, via a referral from the hospital to our volunteer driving coordinators. A driver gets allocated to provide the service to the patient, collects the patient contribution, undertake the journey, and logs their mileage,’ said Illawarra Cancer Carers president Geoff Failes. 

Patients are requested to pay a small nominal fee for the service usually of a few dollars, but this patient contribution does not cover the entire reimbursement of the drivers. Volunteer drivers use their own vehicles to transport cancer patients in the Illawarra and are reimbursed for their personal vehicle use.”

The cost of delivering this program is approximately $54,000 per year, which until now has been provided via fundraising by the Illawarra Cancer Carers, and individual donors such as long term Convoy supporter Alan Doherty of Doherty Transport.

After a submission by the Cancer Carers to the Illawarra Community Foundation from funds raised in the i98FM Illawarra Convoy, the group received a $54,000 donation to cover the costs of this program in the region for the next twelve months.

Assisting with the presentation of a cheque on March 5 at Wollongong Hospital were Bianca Stracic and Sharon Bradley from Team Dandaloo, who have raised considerable funds for Convoy over the years. With Al Doherty a founder of the team formerly known as the Dandaloo Boys, and someone who had also utilised the services of the Illawarra Cancer Carers, it was fantastic to have them there to see Convoy continue Al’s legacy of supporting such a worthwhile cause for cancer patients of all ages in the Illawarra.

“Of course we could not run this program without the support of hundreds of volunteers right across the region,”said Illawarra Cancer Carers Treasurer David Berry. “We’re all volunteers here, with a passion for helping others who are in difficult situations.” If you share that passion too, and would like to get involved, information and contact numbers can be found on the website.