Grant funding has enabled Wessex Cancer Trust to buy the new vehicle and the incredible fundraising efforts of Islanders have also helped to ensure it is now funded well into 2020. Funding cuts in 2017 had posed a threat to the service, which transports Islanders to their Portsmouth hospital appointments for free.
To celebrate the arrival of the new vehicle and the success of the appeal, the charity is hosting a thank you event for all supporters next Wednesday (20th February). Taking place at the charity’s support centre in Lugley Street, Newport, the event will be held between 12:00 and 14:00, with a speech and toast at 13:00.
Those attending include Island businesses and organisations that have been heavily involved in protecting the service. The new bus, which was funded by grants from the Clothworkers’ Foundation and Football for Cancer, will also be at the event.
Cait Allen, Wessex Cancer Trust’s CEO, has said:
“We have been overwhelmed by the support of the Isle of Wight community over the past 14 months and we cannot thank you enough. Island residents were understandably concerned at the prospect of losing the Daisy Bus, which is considered a lifeline for many, and they have rallied round to ensure it can continue to help Islanders when they need it most.
“Being able to purchase a new minibus will help reduce our ongoing costs significantly while also providing a more comfortable experience for patients travelling to the mainland for treatment.
“We have much to celebrate and we’d love everyone that has supported the appeal to join us next Wednesday so we can say thank you in person.”
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To maintain the future of the service for years to come, the charity is planning to host a dedicated Daisy Day annually, with more details to follow.
If you’d like to donate to the Daisy Bus, go to www.wessexcancer.org.uk/donate/donate-online and put ‘Daisy Bus’ in the comment box or call 01983 524186.