Keemo was born on a cold winter’s day in the year 2000
His parents are Thandi and Mfundisi
In 2004, at the age of three and a half, Keemo was diagnosed with cancer
Happily, with good treatment by a specialised Paediatric Oncologist and the support of CHOC, Keemo is now fully recovered and is a SURVIVOR.
KEEMO'S MUM, THANDI Thandi through her experience with Keemo’s illness, volunteers at the local paediatric ward once a week, assisting the medical staff and supporting other parents whose children have been diagnosed with childhood cancer.
Keemo’s dad is a teacher and a keen sportsman. His son’s illness also had a profound impact on him and he has become a committee member of CHOC.
Keemo is very close to his family especially his grandparents on his father’s side. It is rumoured that grandfather Kowley was involved in the armed struggle and his grandmother used to provide milk to some of the present-day members of the ruling party including our president!
SO WHO IS KEEMO?
Keemo is a calf who is proud of his heritage but at age 10 is more concerned with spending time with his friends; going to mooovies and playing sport. His favourite sport is soccer (like his Dad) and he can often be seen on weekends cycling with his parents. The event that he enjoys most is the 94.7 Cycle Challenge where he is entered in the junior race while his parents cycle in the main challenge and are part of the CHOC Cows.
When he grows up, Keemo would like to be a doctor (his hero is Professor Horace Horzowsky; the paediatric oncologist who treated him).
THE IMPACT OF CANCER ON KEEMO'S LIFE As a survivor, Keemo is committed to helping other children in the same position. He is now old enough to realise that he survived only because his cancer was diagnosed early and he received the correct treatment at the Academic Hospital close to where he lives.
KEEMO'S ROLE WITH CHOC Keemo assists CHOC with their Awareness and Early Detection Programme through:
Speaking to his friends and their parents about the early warning signs of childhood cancer
Speaking at his school (all animals are vulnerable Keemo likes to impress upon his friends; cancer does not only happen to calves)
Writing articles on the warning signs for publication in the school magazine (Thandi assists).
PRACTICAL SUPPORT Keemo provides practical support to children with cancer by visiting the wards and speaking to the children about:
He also urges the children to return to the hospital for their treatment.
KEEMO - A SYMBOL OF HOPE
Keemo is a shining example of how one small calf can fight off a disease that kills many adults.
Keemo has agreed to become the official representative of hope for CHOC