I applied to become a volunteer driver for Wicklow Cancer Support over 3 years ago. I have no hesitation in saying that it was one of the best decisions of my life. I have met so many new people from every walk of life. Everyone has a story to tell.
In driving a patient to and from their treatment you join in their journey. For some it might be just a check up following treatment and you can detect their relief when good news is received. Other patients may be undergoing daily radiotherapy treatment for a number of weeks and as they get near the end of this treatment you support them through a very tiring process.
I have found the courage of the patients remarkable, despite the strain of what they are going through. There is no direct public transport to St. Vincent's or St Luke's or St. James' and parking in the big hospitals is a nightmare and costly. Many have families but they have their own lives with work and schools so to be picked up at your door, dropped off at the hospital and then brought home is a huge relief to the patient.
I now look forward every week to getting a call from the office to see if I am available to do a lift. It does help that the whole system is extremely well organised within Wicklow Cancer Support.