Wheels of Hope van for Steinbach area
Completion: October 2021
The Bethesda Foundation has partnered with the Canadian Cancer Society to make a van available for cancer patients in the Steinbach area who are needing to head to Winnipeg for treatment. The Canadian Cancer Society runs a transportation program called Wheels of Hope, and Bethesda Foundation provided the needed funds for the purchase of the van for our area.
Bob Barrow, who lives in Steinbach, has been driving cancer patients to Winnipeg for many years already, in his own vehicle. Bob is a prostate cancer survivor himself, so he can well relate to the patients he transports. He says normally when he picks up someone for the first time, he shares this fact. “It helps to set them at ease because they know that I know what they are going through,” says Barrow. “I meet some great people and they help me, I help them and it’s something I love doing.”
According to Keith Unger, Bethesda Foundation board member, research shows that cancer patients who travel further distances for treatment are more likely to opt-out of treatment. Therefore, providing easier access is most helpful in encouraging these patients. “If we can help relieve that burden that they maybe feel that they’ve created on their friends or family or just the stress of going in and out of Winnipeg, we think it will just help them not have another reason to opt-out of future treatments,” adds Unger.