NEWARK, Del. - In honor of Valentine's Day, the University of Delaware volleyball team made a trip to visit Olivia Calbazana and her family as the Blue Hens continued to support their adopted teammate.
Olivia, a four-year-old who was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor, has been a special member of the Blue Hen family since October. Through the Friends of Jaclyn program, the Delaware volleyball team was paired with Olivia to help provide love and support during her ongoing treatments and therapy.
Since adopting Olivia, the Blue Hens have embraced her as a fellow teammate and member of the Delaware family. Through in-person meetings and electronic communications over the past several months, the players and coaches have continued to lend support and friendship to her and her family.
During the season, Olivia served as a driving force behind the Blue Hens and was a special guest of the team at matches. Through her continued interactions with the squad, a special relationship was cultivated between her and the volleyball program.
Prior to becoming an honorary Blue Hen, Olivia was diagnosed with medulloblastoma in November 2008. Since her diagnosis, she has undergone surgery, radiation treatment, and chemotherapy to aid in the recovery process. She will begin her 10th round of chemotherapy today.
To follow along with Olivia and receive updates on her progress, please visit her journal at www.CaringBridge.org.
The Friends of Jaclyn program is a support system designed to pair children who have pediatric brain tumors with athletic teams. Through the program, a special bond is developed which helps support the children and their families and serves as a unique way to improve the quality of life for those who need it most.
Currently, there are over 180 children paired with various collegiate and high school teams around the nation. For more information on the program, please visit their website at www.FriendsofJaclyn.org.