FREE Transportation Program for Underprivileged Families Who Have a Child with Cancer
Families we serve either have one or no vehicle & something as basic as getting to the hospital for life-saving treatment each day can be an insurmountable barrier without help. Using public transportation was taking up to 7 hours while exposing their immune-compromised child to an unsafe atmosphere.
Richard and Diane Nares founded the Emilio Nares Foundation (ENF) in 2003 following the death of their 5-year-old son, Emilio, who lost his courageous battle with leukemia. Ride With Emilio is a free transportation service essential to ensure that sick children access weekly chemotherapy and other crucial medical appointments. Ride With Emilio serves approximately 45 families weekly (15 children daily) in San Diego and Orange Counties with transportation to medical appointments and related services. Overall we have traveled more than 325,000 miles during the last seven years and provide nearly 7,500 patient trips!
The Ride With Emilio patient transportation program is the only program in California, and possibly the nation, dedicated to providing safe, reliable, hygienic and affordable (free) transportation to cancer treatment for poor children who would otherwise miss their scheduled appointments. ENF identified a need for transportation among pediatric cancer patients from poor families when Oncology staff at Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego estimated that about four kids each day missed their cancer treatment because of transportation-related issues. Each missed appointment delays carefully designed treatment plans and harms a child’s best chance of recovery. These were (and still are) families with either no vehicle, or only one vehicle that is used by the primary financial provider to get to and from work. Public transportation is never an option for a sick child enduring chemotherapy. Even worse, two adolescent patients were mugged in separate incidents while waiting for trolley transportation to take them to the hospital for their chemo appointment.
Richard Nares began driving families in his own vehicle to ensure their children received cancer treatment on time, but was soon overwhelmed by the need. With a plan, Richard rallied donors and launched the Ride With Emilio patient transportation program in 2005. The program is anchored in San Diego, where two vans provided more than 1,600 trips last year for San Diego pediatric patients, and another 1,785 trips when including accompanying family members. Ride With Emilio expanded to serve patients at Orange County Children’s Hospital in 2007.
Today, Ride With Emilio provides nearly 3,000 trips for patient families each year (more than 1,600 in San Diego), and that doesn’t include trips for summer camps. After nearly six years, missed appointments due to transportation have been virtually eliminated among those served, when compared with baseline numbers before program launch. The program serves as a national model, and has been recognized as a case study by the U.S. Surgeon General and President Obama.
More About This Charity
Emilio Nares Foundation
To provide programs and services to underprivileged families who have children with cancer.
- This Achievement raised $500,000
- This charity raised $135,000 in the past year
- This Achievement helped 7,500 people
- This charity helped 2,000 people in the past year
- 70,000 miles travels & over 1000 trips to transport low income families and their kids with cancer