Photo by Angela Davocol
The Letran Student Council is currently organizing fund-raiser events for ailing Letran guard Jerrick Balanza, who was recently diagnosed with a tumor in the temporal lobe of his brain.
Balanza’s surgery costs P500,000, according to Letran Athletics Director Fr. Victor Calvo, OP.
"Initially, P800,000 was the cost given to us but since the neuro-surgeon, Dr. Manuel Mariano, is from Letran and was recently awarded as an outstanding alumnus, it was cut to P500,000," said Calvo.
With a bulk of money needed for the surgery, Letran Student Council president LJ Bisco bared that they are planning to launch three events to aid Balanza’s financial needs.
“‘Yung first kasi mag-a ano kami ng donation box tas ika-kalat namin sa buong Letran kasi pag nandoon parang doon nila maila-laglag yung gusto nilang donations,” Bisco said in an interview with The LANCE.
“’Next naman is ‘yung league next Thursday. Ang participants doon, meron siyang dalawang games na exhibition. Bale nakausap na ni [Letran] athletics, yung mga alumni kunwari yung mga nasa PBA, maglalaro sila doon sa second game. Tas yung first students ang maglalaro,” he added.
Letran’s Athletics department will be inviting former Knights to participate in the charity game.
“’Yung sa game, ‘yung basketball game, ang makukuha nating money is from the tickets na ise-sell natin,” explained Bisco.
“Last is yung sa food. Ang partner namin diyan is Mang George. Magsa start na kami later. Magbebenta kami ng mga pastries nila,” he added.
Bisco assures that the events’ proceeds will be surrendered to the Finance office and will be donated to Balanza.
“Yung collection, lahat ‘yon, lahat ng money ng turn-outs ‘non, i-au-audit namin. Tas isu-surrender naming sa finance. Sila yung magse-safe keep. Lahat ng gagawin natin dito, lahat ‘yon, lahat ng money na maco collect is diretso talaga sa recovery niya,” said Bisco.
With this unfortunate incident, Bisco urges his fellow Letranites to stand as one in helping the ill Letran star.
“Sana yung mga students is willingly, hindi naming sila pipilitin na magbigay ng money pero sana magdonate sila for a knight na nagre present sa atin, sana tulungan siya,” he explained.
As a student-athlete and a part of the student body, Bisco feels that it’s a necessity to help Balanza, as he represented the Letran community in countless of battles on the hardcourt.
“Si Jerrick Balanza ‘di ba player natin siya, nire represent niya yung Letran. Pero bago ang lahat part muna siya ng student body and [the] Student Council is yung sa mga student concerns,” he said.
“Sana yung mga students is willingly, hindi naming sila pipilitin na magbigay ng money pero sana magdonate sila for a knight na nagre present sa atin. Nagbibigay ng efforts para irepresent yung Letran sa NCAA, sana tulungan siya,” he added.
The school is now accepting cash donations that can be deposited at:
Account Number: 4500003129
Account Name: Colegio de San Juan de Letran, Inc.