100 Drivers – 100 Days

100 Drivers 100 Days

“With the growth of our program, we simply need more volunteers. If we could get ‘100 drivers in the next 100 days’, we’d be in much better shape” Bob Smith – President Volunteer Cancer Drivers Society

Surrey, B.C. (March 27, 2023): Since starting with just a handful of drivers in 2016, the Volunteer Cancer Drivers Society (VCDS) has expanded its service exponentially throughout the Lower Mainland. With an urgent need for more volunteers, it has set a goal of seeking “100 new drivers region-wide in the next 100 days”.

Small, but mighty, VCDS delivered 6,000 rides at no cost to cancer patients in its startup year.  The demand has been trending upward ever since and is forecast to reach 29,000 ride requests this year.

VCDS has recruited almost 350 member drivers, largely from the eastern side of the region, south of the Fraser and in the Fraser Valley. All of them volunteer their time and are offered a vehicle allowance by VCDS to help cover car costs.

But only one-fifth of those drivers are in the City of Vancouver, while the BC Cancer outpatient centre there and nearby VGH Blackmore Pavilion account for almost half of all the rides VCDS provides.

“We’re grateful for each and every one of the volunteer drivers who help us with this vital need,” says Bob Smith, president of the Volunteer Cancer Drivers Society. “Many cancer patients can’t get to their appointments on their own due to any number of factors including age, medical condition, having no nearby family members or an inability to drive. With the growth of our program, we simply need more volunteers. If we could get ‘100 drivers in the next 100 days’, we’d be in much better shape.

“Perhaps Vancouver residents have fewer cars per capita, or it might be demographics. But whatever it is, we need more drivers right across the Lower Mainland, and especially in Vancouver, Burnaby, Richmond and the Tri-Cities. Otherwise, we’re forced to dispatch drivers from other areas like Surrey or the North Shore. For a not-for-profit like us, we need to avoid the extra time and cost of those kinds of trips.

“We believe access to essential cancer treatment shouldn’t be an additional burden for cancer patients and their families,” Smith adds. “We are dedicated to helping all cancer patients in need, so we really need help from more drivers.”

THE NEED – Already the world’s biggest health crisis, cancer rates are expected to rise by *35 per cent in B.C. over the next decade. (*Sarah Roth, BC Cancer Foundation President and CEO, September 2022).

Volunteer Driver Membership
Trips To Top Treatmen tCentres

Incorporated as a not-for-profit society in 2016, VCDS is an all-volunteer registered charity with 370 volunteers including drivers, dispatchers, and the VCDS board.

Drivers are “service-to-others” minded and able to make Monday to Friday clinic times using their own vehicle to provide door-to-door patient service.

VCDS drivers come from a wide range of backgrounds, predominately retired and often with a link to family, friend or personal experience with cancer. Drivers are offered a vehicle allowance of $.55 per kilometre. in 2023, VCDS drivers are projected to drive patients a total of 785,000 kilometres.

As a community-funded service we are entirely reliant on our volunteer efforts to generate donations and grants from foundations, corporations, patients, the public, municipalities, first responders, service clubs and associations, and importantly from our own volunteer members

To become a volunteer driver please fill out our online form here