The Child Cancer Foundation is calling for volunteers to help with the annual street appeal.

The appeal is the biggest annual fundraising event on the Child Cancer Foundation Fundraising calendar. It depends on the support of volunteers nationwide to collect funds.

Every week, three children are diagnosed with cancer in New Zealand. The Child Cancer Foundation provides tailored support.

Last year approximately 600 volunteers took to the streets to collect donations, raising $232,913.

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Volunteering is something of a calling for the Tuiono-Pouao family. Their family was supported by the foundation when their seven-year-old daughter Iris was diagnosed with cancer in 2014. Iris passed away five months after being diagnosed.

"We felt so well supported throughout our experience with Iris that we felt like we needed to give back," says Iris's mother, Darlene.

"We signed up to volunteer for the Foundation's annual Street Appeal and encouraged extended family and friends to get involved."

In 2016, inspired by his sister's favourite rainbow bead, Tutavake came up with the idea of creating rainbow box troll costumes to wear while collecting donations for the appeal.

While collecting, the family were surprised by 30 of Iris and Tutavake's school friends who arrived to support the family's fundraising efforts.

"It was amazing and a little overwhelming for our family in a beautiful, humbling way. It showed us that the gift of charity goes beyond a few hours of volunteering. It has a ripple effect and touches others in ways you can't even imagine."

The Tuiono-Pouao whānau now coordinate all Street Appeal volunteering activities in Porirua and Tawa and will be out on the streets again in 2020.

Robyn Kiddle, Chief Executive at Child Cancer Foundation says the foundation is grateful to anyone who can spare a couple of hours to raise funds to help Kiwi kids and their families through their cancer experience.

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"There are collection sites nationwide and just a couple of hours out of people's days will make a huge difference."

● Child Cancer Foundation's annual Street Appeal will take place on Friday 28 and Saturday 29 February, 2020.
To volunteer, or find out more, visit: www.childcancer.org.nz/events/street-appeal