Campaign for kids with cancer asks Kiwis to wear their support on their heads.

Jock Davies looks like any other sports-mad Kiwi kid, but behind his youthful grin is courage aplenty.

The 12-year-old endured two years of intense treatment to battle a rare form of leukaemia - including 80 days of chemotherapy, 52 blood transfusions, 42 bone marrow aspirations, 149 days in isolation and numerous x-rays.

Tomorrow, locals from his small west Otago town of Tapanui will don wigs for the Child Cancer Foundation's (CCF) first Wig Wednesday; a nationwide campaign to support the courage of Kiwi kids battling cancer and to raise funds for the foundation.

Jock, a CCF ambassador, finished his treatment in November and is now back doing what he loves - playing cricket and rugby.


"I missed not being able to play sports, play fighting with my brothers, my pets and my friends," he said of life during his treatment.

But he said from the start the foundation was a "God-send" that gave his family hope and strength on their darkest days.

Schools have been encouraged to hold a mufti day for Wig Wednesday and get their students to wear wigs for a gold coin donation. Businesses can also hold fundraisers, with staff sporting new locks for a day.

Jock's mother, Sarah Davies, said the initiative was a great idea and she was pleased Tapanui businesses and schools were among those who had passionately got behind it.

"People driving through Tapanui will think, 'Oh my god, there's all these people with wigs.'"

Mrs Davies said it was their way of giving back to a foundation that was "dear to our heart".

She said from day one of the family's cancer journey, the CCF had offered them support.

"They really broke those long days of isolation," she said. "They become family; you form a real connection with your support person."

People driving through Tapanui will think, 'Oh my god, there's all these people with wigs.'


She said initially she had passed off her son's symptoms as just the flu, or maybe glandular fever.

"We never thought cancer would be entering our lives."

But what she thought would just be a quick trip to the local doctor ended with a trip to Invercargill Hospital. They were then flown to Christchurch Hospital for chemotherapy a couple of days later.

Mrs Davies said her son's battle was "quite a blur at the time. We were in a cloud of disbelief".

The hardest thing was watching someone you love go through such harrowing times.

"Jock was such an active child, really into his sport and then all of a sudden he's got to be wheeled around in a wheelchair."

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