Donations to the Angel Fund
(checks made out to “CRC”) can be mailed to:
Cancer Resource Center
612 West State St.
Ithaca, NY 14850
Donations can also be made online.
This fund will be used to provide direct cash assistance to individuals
with cancer in our community who have a specific and immediate financial need.
Created in Memory of Miguel Ángel Balsa Marín
The Angel Fund was created in memory of Miguel Balsa, who died from colon cancer on Christmas Day of 2013. The purpose of the Angel Fund is to provide some financial assistance to clients with an urgent or immediate need. Miguel was a beloved young man, scholar, and teacher who had been involved with the Cancer Resource Center for some time, and he possessed a special kindness that allowed him to connect with others going through treatment. When we realized that Miguel’s middle name was Ángel, we knew that the Angel Fund was meant to be.
Miguel was born in Santander, the beautiful capital of the northern, coastal province of Cantabria in Spain, and moved to New York City a month after September 11, 2001 to live with his partner and future husband, Gerard Aching, and to pursue a career in this country. With the loving support of his close-knit family and life-long friends, Miguel began his American adventure. When he arrived in New York, he came with an appetite for seeing the world, an enthusiasm for experiencing life in the United States, and skills that would lead to a successful professional outcome. Though he was diagnosed after he had returned to studying, he eventually finished his doctoral degree in Comparative Literature from Princeton University and began teaching at Cornell. He was a rigorous, imaginative scholar and a talented teacher who cared deeply for his students’ education and personal growth. Miguel was a very sharp, talented, and affectionate man. He possessed an indomitable spirit, an endearing sense of humor, an infectious laugh, and a warm and deeply generous disposition. He loved life and was so gifted with the capacity to empathize with and care for others that he touched many lives.
At the Cancer Resource Center, we often hear about how clients are struggling with difficult circumstances and situations. We realize that a small amount of money can make a significant difference to someone affected by cancer, and we try to provide some help when there are no other resources available. We appreciate all the angels that have made donations to the Angel Fund, which makes this type of assistance possible. Here’s what Stephanie Ganor had to say after receiving assistance from the fund: “Finding out I had cancer was devastating. Then came the bills for treatment, prescriptions, and all miscellaneous things related. I became overwhelmed financially. When I received a check in the mail from the Cancer Resource Center I was so thankful to have their assistance.” For Deb Danko, the fund “changed the situation to doable when it was not. A car repair to get to chemo appointments, a medication needed on a late Friday night for pain, or a gas card to get to Roswell for transplant. I reached out to the Angel Fund, appropriately named, and have been able to grant help as well as hope because it is more than monetary funding—it is human kindness!”
Since its inception, the Angel Fund has received over 80 donations. Some families have chosen to donate to the fund to honor the memory of their loved ones. The Angel Fund will continue to provide this special relief to our clients in need.
Will you consider being one of our angels and donating today?
Gerard and Miguel
Miguel is wearing an orange sweater in the photo above