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Students organize fundraiser to help sick softball player

Four Chico Junior High School leadership students organize fundraiser for their friend who's battling cancer

Posted: Feb 21, 2018 6:59 PM

Local leadership students are planning a fundraiser to help benefit a 12-year-old softball player who's been diagnosed with cancer. Action News Now's Ross Field brings us the story.


"When she got cancer, I felt like I had to do something about it," said Isabella Valle-Snyder.

And so she did. Isabella Valle-Snyder, Athena Corneto, Stella Hawkins and Savannah Trim - all students at Chico Junior High School are on a mission.

"These students have come up with an idea on their own," said Andy Wahl, teacher.

The students organized a Round Table dinner to raise money for their friend and softball player Madeline Ballew who has leukemia.

"It's weird not seeing her because I usually see her and I talk to her about it and she doesn't like home-schooling, so I wish she was here with us," added Valle-Snyder.

Ballew is undergoing chemotherapy and has to travel back and forth from UC Davis Medical Center four-days-a-week

"Everyone who has cancer, it can be expensive because the treatments and they're just going through a rough time. We really just wanted to do something to help madeline financially," said Corneto.

"We've gone to school together for awhile and we've been friends for a really long time and it'll be really cool to help her," added Hawkins.

The fundraiser takes place Thursday, February 22nd, from 5:00 - 9:00 p.m. at the Round Table Pizza on Mangrove Avenue. 20-percent of the dinner purchase will go to the Ballew family.

The students' effort to help out a friend in need resonates with their teacher Andy Wahl, who's a cancer patient himself.

"I couldn't be more proud, these kids have stepped up and have done something completely selfless. Being a cancer patient myself, I had a similar fundraiser that my own students put on for me at Round Table and my family is still reaping the benefits from that money," said Wahl.

"Chico Junior is all about helping people and making a difference in the world and just little things in life like this can really help people a lot and make a really big difference in their lives," said Savannah Trim.

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