Bargo man encourages locals to step up and support cancer patients

Bill Thomson wants other people to volunteer as drivers for the Cancer Council picking up patients and driving them to treatments. Picture: Simon Bennett
Bill Thomson wants other people to volunteer as drivers for the Cancer Council picking up patients and driving them to treatments. Picture: Simon Bennett

Undergoing cancer treatment can be hard but Bill Thomson does his best to help make cancer patients' lives a little easier.

The Bargo resident is a proud Cancer Council NSW Transport to Treatment driver.

Mr Thomson spends his spare time driving people to the Bowral Cancer Centre for much-needed treatment.

He has been a volunteer for the past five years.

"I first decided I would apply to Cancer Council to become a volunteer driver upon hearing about the Transport to Treatment program from a neighbour who was undergoing treatment at the Bowral Cancer Centre," Mr Thomson said.

"Being retired and with plenty of time on my hands it was an ideal role for me to become involved in.

"Also, being a cancer survivor myself, I felt that I had a real appreciation of what people go through."

Now the Cancer Council is calling on the Wollondilly community to volunteer for the Southern Highlands Transport to Treatment program to help transport disadvantaged cancer patients to their cancer treatment.

The Cancer Council's community programs coordinator Sally Lewis said she was grateful for Bill Thomson and the amazing volunteer drivers in the Southern Highlands.

"Volunteers like Bill are a crucial part of our workforce, reducing the financial and emotional burden of cancer by providing free transport to people affected by cancer who have no transport alternatives to get to their treatment," she said.

"Patients really appreciate and speak in glowing terms of all the drivers who volunteer to take them to their treatments and are especially appreciative of the work done by the Transport Coordinators whom the patients liaise with regularly.

"So far this financial year, our Transport to Treatment drivers have volunteered 1850 hours of their time and driven 60,500 kilometres to make sure cancer patients could get to treatment."

Mr Thomson encouraged other people to get involved with the program.

"Being a volunteer driver for the Cancer Council Transport to Treatment program is very rewarding for me and I encourage others, both male and female, to consider taking on this worthwhile role," he said.

To join Bill and volunteer as a Transport to Treatment driver, please send an expression of interest to sally.lewis@nswcc.org.au or call 4223 0200 for more information.