San Diego State student Josh Delgado and his brother Jacob have done something extraordinarily unconventional. At ages 22 and 24 respectively, they’ve created their own start-up business and are hoping to get the support of students on campus. But what’s truly unconventional about this start-up? It’s an organization that intends to save your balls.
Through their organization I Heart My Balls, these Hemet natives have begun a campaign to spread awareness of testicular and prostate cancer. I Heart My Balls actively donates to research foundations such as the American Cancer Society and has also supported individuals suffering with either disease.
“A huge part of the reason I started this campaign was because my uncle was diagnosed with prostate cancer,” Josh Delegado said. “Prostate cancer is one of the leading causes of death in men, and I didn’t feel like the disease really had much awareness attached to it.”
Since the Delgados started the business, it’s grown at a reasonable rate. Though the business only employs five official members, the two brothers have a number of spirited volunteers behind the cause. The business, which had its first public event at SDSU’s Entrepreneur Day on Tuesday, gave away raffle tickets with every merchandise purchase to give students the chance to win shirts and other prizes.
“Wristbands are $3.95, which is the same price as an ‘I Heart Boobies’ wristband,” Delegado said. “We’re also working on more designs for shirts, belts, hats, lanyards and other products. And we’ve got suggestions for purse designs for girls.”
And what a design it is. Allen Ramirez, the business’ chief branding officer and a graduate of SDSU, created a dual image of an upside down heart within a heart. On second look, however, the upside down heart looks to be fairly characteristic of “the family jewels.” Though the brothers haven’t yet received any negative attention from their cause or the logo itself, Delegado said, “We definitely don’t sell our merchandise to high school students. We want this business to be age-appropriate, so we focus primarily on selling our merchandise to college students.”
The brothers have a definite idea of where they’d like to see the business go in the future. “We’ve been trying to get into contact with similar organizations like I Heart Boobies and LIVESTRONG. We’d like (I Heart Balls) to work with them.” Delegado said. He also added they intend for the business to spread within San Diego county, though they plan on focusing its growth in the University of California, San Diego and the University of San Diego. From there, the business will expand eastward into Arizona and other states.
“We’d like to thank students on this campus for their support,” Delegado said. He finished with some advice for students: “If you have a brilliant idea, act upon it and pursue it. If you don’t, someone else might jump on it.”
Follow and like I Heart My Balls on Twitter and Facebook, and look for future events on campus.