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Cancer appeal week is all about the kids

BY LUCY VICKERS
Last updated 05:00 24/03/2009
Photo: LUCY VICKERS

BRAVE BATTLERS: From left: Bianca White, Zavier Coulam, Tui McLeod and Erfan Bour at the car signing event.

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Four brave children with one very important thing in common met at a Child Cancer event.

Zavier Coulam, 5, Bianca White, 5, Tui McLeod, 6, and Erfan Bour, 7, all have the illness and came together to sign a car which will be raffled off for the charity.

The children donned their colourful beads of courage – one for each procedure they’ve undergone.

Tui, from Birkenhead, was diagnosed with a brain tumour in June 2007 after being paralysed down one side.

She has finished her treatment and doctors are hoping the tumour stays dormant. Tui has 191 beads.

Erfan, from Glenfield, and Zavier, from Dairy Flat, have leukaemia.

Erfan has more than 1100 beads and Zavier has 240 for treatments such as lumbar punctures and chemotherapy.

Bianca, from Albany, was also diagnosed with leukaemia – two weeks before her fourth birthday in 2007.

Her mum, Lea, was tying up her daughter’s hair before her ballet lesson when she noticed a swollen gland on her neck.

Blood tests revealed an abnormally high white cell count and Bianca was given an immediate transfusion.

In the first four months Bianca spent 65 days in hospital, 34 of those in isolation.

She has 960 beads.

More than 150 children are diagnosed with cancer each year. The Child Cancer Foundation provides support to children with cancer, their families and the health professionals who treat them.

They need volunteers for this week’s street appeal, phone 0800 4CHILD (0800-424-453), visit www.childcancer.org.nz or email mthomson@childcancer.org.nz.

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- North Shore Times

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