Rugby star backs cycle for cancer charity

Rugby legend Donncha O’Callaghan is lending his support to a charity cycle designed to raise funds for a voluntary service providing cancer patients with free transport to Cork hospitals.

Proceeds from the fun event will aid Cancer Connect. The charity is primarily a west Cork-based voluntary-run transport service assisting outpatients requiring either radiotherapy or chemotherapy treatment.

It was founded in April 2011 when a group of concerned citizens in the Lisheen/Church Cross area near Skibbereen became aware of a number of cancer sufferers who found it difficult to get transport each day to Cork.

A call was made for volunteer drivers and the response was overwhelming.

Almost 18 months later, the charity operates two eight-seater buses making daily trips to the hospitals for patients requiring radiotherapy.

Furthermore, it has a number of “community cars” transporting people who need chemotherapy treatment.

Cancer Connect is supported administratively by West Cork Rural Transport, which rosters all the drivers.

The service operates two routes to the hospitals. The first runs from the Mizen peninsula, taking in Goleen, Schull and Ballydehob, via Skibbereen, Rosscarbery and Clonakilty to Cork.

The second is from Beara, departing Castletownbere through Glengarriff, Bantry, Dunmanway and Ballineen.

On Sept 15, more experienced cyclists will be asked to raise money by tackling a 60-mile route, while beginners will be asked to complete a 30-mile circuit.

The charity cycle will start from the Clonakilty GAA grounds at Ahamilla and take in Bandon, Ballinhassig, Belgooly, Kinsale, Kilbrittain and Timoleague. The shorter route is Clonakilty-Bandon-Timoleague-Clonakilty.

* Registration for the cycle events are available www.cancerconnect.eu

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