On the Road With Care-A-Van


Since 1998, volunteers of the Care-A-Van for Kids program at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford have helped make life-saving treatment and medical care accessible to seriously ill children without reliable means of transportation.

The program began with a small pool of volunteers, mostly firefighters, at a time when transportation barriers were identified as a primary reason for patients missing their appointments. Today, Care-A-Van for Kids has a diverse team of nearly 40 volunteers throughout the Bay Area. Nanci Amolsch, one of the volunteers, has been driving patients from the Watsonville area to and from the hospital for more than 12 years. She says, “It’s an honor to be part of a program that provides door-to-door service for patients who may otherwise not receive their treatment.”

Donated vehicles are stationed in various locations throughout the Bay Area for the convenience of volunteers, including six new hybrid Toyota Priuses — five of which were given by the Homestead Foundation.

“This kind of personal attention in health care is unique and I feel special to be a part of it,” explains volunteer-driver Susan Weisberg. “The families are going through very challenging and often uncertain times and I get to witness their strength and perseverance.”

With Care-A-Van’s 16th anniversary approaching, the volunteers continue to assist low-income families in need of transportation, regardless of their location. Last year, the program served more than 550 families, providing over 1,300 rides.


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