Week 10: The staff at St Luke's are so good, I think they're hand-picked
THE Friends of St Luke's was set up in 1981 to raise funds for St Luke's Radiation Oncology centres in Dublin. The charity helps to keep the facilities well-equipped, warm, friendly and comfortable for patients undergoing treatment at any of the three cancer treatment centres.
The hospital network is made up of St Luke's Hospital Rathgar (including Oakland Lodge), St Luke's Radiation Oncology Centre at Beaumont Hospital and St Luke's Radiation Oncology Centre at St James's Hospital.
The Friends of St Luke's also raises funds for the purchase of new and replacement equipment and various projects. Recent projects include the installation of a new patient lift in St Luke's Hospital Rathgar and the refurbishment of the 'home away from home' Oakland Lodge.
Angela Leahy, from Wexford, experienced the services first hand recently when she underwent treatment for cancer in St Luke's. She was also the inspiration for a group of ladies taking part in the Vhi Women's Mini Marathon to raise funds for the charity. "I was diagnosed with cancer about 18 months ago," she explains. "I had a very aggressive treatment and was up in St Luke's for about six months all together. I'm cancer free at the moment, which is great.
"When I came out of hospital, a group of women visited me. They decided they wanted to do the Vhi Women's Mini Marathon to raise money for St Luke's. They were marvelous to do it. My friend Breda Houghton was the one behind the training. Her son paid for the bus to take all the people up to Dublin. I didn't do it myself, but you could say I was the inspiration! The whole community got behind them and they raised €4,000 which was great.
"St Luke's is absolutely wonderful. The staff are so caring. They're there if there's anything wrong, especially the staff within the chemotherapy and radium therapy. I think they're hand-picked, they're so good. They're my angels!"
For more information on the Friends of St Luke's go to www.friendsofstlukes.ie/