There was a time when cancer survivor Claudia Little could only dream of having a trip to a hair salon with her famous aunt Lorraine Downes. During her treatment for a Wilms Tumour after diagnosis in June 2009 at age four, Claudia lost all of her long blond locks.
Since completion of treatment last January, Claudia's hair has blossomed into beautiful curls and she is back to her bubbly self.
This week she got together with her aunt Lorraine, a Child Cancer Foundation ambassador, to promote the the Foundation's "Hair for a Cause." The campaign was introduced in 2010 and this year has more than doubled in size with over 200 salons throughout New Zealand asking their clients to add $2 at the till. 100% of the donation goes directly to support children with cancer and their families.
The Foundation is aiming to raise $75,000 through Hair for a "Cause," representing each of the 75,000 treatments and procedures children with cancer undergo each year.
The participating salons are listed at <a href="http://www.funrazor.org.nz/salons">http://www.funrazor.org.nz/salons</a>
The Child Cancer Foundation aims to reduce the impact of cancer by offering support services 365 days of the year, ensuring children and their families are supported, informed and well cared for at every stage of their journey.
As a true charity the Child Cancer Foundation receives no government assistance and relies on your help to make a difference.
Claudia and her family were supported throughout treatment by a Child Cancer Foundation Family Support Coordinator and still stay in touch with the Foundation and other families they were connected with by CCF.
Claudia's mother Carolyn says the support was invaluable. "They Foundation does a fantastic job helping families get through. It would be horrible if you were on your own when your child is diagnosed with cancer," she says.
In addition to losing her hair, Claudia lost a quarter of her body weight during treatment, which included radiation and chemotherapy. One of her kidneys also had to be removed.
Claudia, now six, is flourishing at the Star of the Sea School in Howick, Auckland, and enjoying gymnastics, swimming and ballet.
The Child Cancer Foundation receives no direct government funding or support from other cancer agencies, relying solely on the generosity of supporters, donors, volunteers and sponsors.
While Claudia is looking forward to a wonderful family Christmas other children are still going through the cancer journey.
Christmas doesn't always mean more family time, presents and a chance to unwind. It can actually make life harder than normal . No child wants to spend Christmas Day in hospital or be too unwell to eat and isolated from other family members by low immunity.
There are several other ways to can help a child with cancer this Christmas:
CALL: 0900 4 CHILD (4 2445) - $20 donation
POST: Child Cancer Foundation, PO Box 152, Shortland St, Auckland 1140.
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