Balay Canossa Foundation, Inc. (BCFI) located in Purok 9-A, Linangohan, Tablon, recently held its annual Children’s Christmas Party organized by Limketkai Luxe Hotel management and Del Monte Philippines through representatives from the Bugo-based Philippine Packing Corporation.
The Balay Canossa Foundation is an orphanage and rehabilitation home that provides for homeless or street children and CICL’s or children in conflict with the law who needs a second chance at life in terms of food, clothing, and shelter. Those who are willing are sent to nearby public schools. Other services provided are catechism, recollections, counseling, livelihood and occupational therapy.
Limketkai Luxe Hotel management’s support was headed by its general manager, Mr. Jerome dela Fuente, while Del Monte was represented by Mr. Ramon Galimba and his party.
Before the party began, the official priest for Balay Canossa officiated a mass for everyone.
After this, Mr. Jerome dela Fuente and Mr. Ramon Galimba gave their respective small talks as to the continuous support they give the Balay Canossa as well as the good job being undertaken for the children.
The children were then treated to kid’s games facilitated by a host, and prizes were given to the winners. Gifts were also distributed to the children, courtesy of the sponsors. A Transformers mascot even arrived for the party to entertain the children.
Prepared food, buffet style, courtesy of the Kave Restaurant, Limketkai Luxe, and Del Monte was served to the children and guests. Finally, a Pinoy-style ice cream vendor made the rounds to give treats to the children and guests.
Photo sessions followed, with many of the children – wearing red or yellow t-shirts – only too happy to be photographed with the guests.
The roots of the Balay Canossa originated from its parent, the House of Friendship, which was established in 1978 at the Sto. Niño Parish, Cogon, through the initiative of the late Arch. Patrick Cronin, SSC, DD. This was the archdiocese’s response to the growing problem of the city’s homeless or street kids. It was administered by the Cannosian Sisters. In the mid-1980’s they also continued to administer the orphanage.
By the mid-90’s, it was evident that the House of Friendship and its annex in Cogon could not keep up with its implementation since it needed a more “homely” environment for its children to grow up in better surroundings. Being in the Cogon area was becoming a motive for some of the street kids to simply go back into the streets. Thus, through local and foreign donations, a four-hectare lot in Tablon was purchased and a home-like building was built. On September 15, 1990, the center-based program Balay Canossa Home for Street Children was inaugurated, located in Purok 9-A, Linangohan, Tablon.
On December 14, 2000, the archdiocese eventually took steps to merge the House of Friendship and Balay Canossa Home. Thus, was born the Balay Canossa Foundation, Inc. (BCFI) on January 25, 2001. In August 2001, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) granted Balay Canossa its license to operate as reception home for individuals in a crisis situation.