Teenager Jake Bailey grabbed headlines around the world when he delivered a rousing speech from a wheelchair at his school’s end of year prize giving in 2015. At the time Jake was the Head Boy at Christchurch Boys’ High School, and had just one week earlier been diagnosed with the fastest growing form of cancer, Burkitt’s non-Hodgkins lymphoma,. He was given two weeks to live if the cancer was left untreated, and was hospitalised for three months while undergoing intensive chemotherapy treatment.
A video of the speech Jake made to his fellow students was viewed by millions and attracted media attention globally. His now famous quote – 'Here's the thing, none of us get out of life alive, so be gallant, be great, be gracious, and be grateful for the opportunities you have' – was voted Massey University’s 2015 New Zealand Quote of the Year.
Now in remission, Jake is based on the Gold Coast in Australia from where he travels to deliver inspirational speeches that draw on his experience of cancer and all that it has taught him. He is an ambassador for the Maia Health Foundation in New Zealand and the Tour de Cure in Australia.