Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation

PAGCOR makes Christmas merrier for breast cancer patients

Thu | 12.13.2018 | 12:00 NN

PAGCOR makes Christmas merrier for breast cancer patientsPAGCOR employees distribute noche buena gift packs to breast cancer patients under the care of Philippine Foundation for Breast Care, Inc. during the the fifth-day of PAGCOR’s Pamaskong Handog 2018.

PAGCOR makes Christmas merrier for breast cancer patientsBreast cancer may have weakened their bodies, but not their indomitable spirit. For Michelle (left) and Nenita (right) as well as the hundreds of breast cancer patients at the Philippine Foundation for Breast Care, Inc. (PFBCI) faith, hope and love will shine eternal.

Clad in a bright red dress, 29-year-old Michelle Beltran looks ready for the holidays. But behind the smiles and brave demeanor is a woman battling with Stage 4 breast cancer.

The cancer already spread to her liver, she was told. But despite the bleak prognosis and the dire financial straits that the illness brought to her family, the young mother to a four-year-old boy – who is also battling with mixed malignant germ cell cancer – hangs on, if only for her son.

Michelle shares that every chemotherapy cycle entails a huge financial dilemma for her family because her husband’s freelance painting job doesn’t pay much – not even enough for their needs.

Thankfully, organizations like the Philippine Foundation for Breast Care, Inc., (PFBCI) also known as the Kasuso Foundation, has always been there for financially-challenged breast cancer patients like her.

On December 10, 2018, the PFBCI became the fifth-day beneficiary of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation’s (PAGCOR) annual Pamaskong Handog activity.

During the grand Christmas party hosted by PAGCOR, over 400 breast cancer patients temporarily set aside their struggles and experienced the joy of the Christmas season. Aside from the Christmas party, the state-run gaming agency also distributed noche buena gift packs which the patients brought home to their families.

PAGCOR’s Vice President for Corporate Social Responsibility Group (CRSG) Jimmy Bondoc, who led the gift-giving event, shared his own journey of losing a loved one to cancer with the passing of his father this year. “I want you to know that you are not alone in your battles. But even in our struggles, we can take comfort in each other. We can lean on one another,” he said.

This is not the first time that PAGCOR reached out to the PFBCI. In 2011, the state-run gaming agency also donated P1.1 million to the foundation.

The financial assistance, according to Aileen Antolin, PFBCI Trustee for Program Development was used to buy hospital equipment and for the renovation of the Breast Care Center’s facilities at the East Avenue Medical Center (EAMC).

“We started in a very small chemo area – fitting in 20 people in a very cramped space. It looked depressing. We were sharing a restroom with other patients, hence putting ourselves at risk. We thought we can do something about it, then PAGCOR came. So lumaki ang chemo area, nagkaroon ng comfort room for patients and staff and we were able to purchase much-needed equipment like the laminar cabinets (the preparation area for mixing the chemo medicines), chemotherapy chairs and infusion pumps,” Antolin narrated.

PFBCI is a non-stock, non-profit, grassroots, volunteer-based organization, committed and dedicated to fight breast cancer and save lives. It implements several advocacy programs that aim to increase women’s awareness on breast cancer – from screening, early detection, resource generation, emotional healing, support groups, among others.

“Ang nagpapalakas ng aming loob ay yung nakikita namin na mayroong nangyayari sa buhay ng mga pasyente. Nadudugtungan ang kanilang buhay. Naibabalik mo sila sa society. Maraming salamat sa PAGCOR sa pagsama sa pakikibaka para dalhin namin ito. Breast cancer is a burden not only to the patients but also to the government, the hospitals. Kailangan namin ng tulong ng mga taong gaya ng PAGCOR na makikibuhat ng dalahin na ito,” Antolin cited.

Go back