Anchor of Hope Fund to kickoff ‘Sponsor a Student’ campaign

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PROVIDENCE—The Anchor of Hope, the diocesan organization that provides scholarship funding to help make a Catholic school education more affordable for financially challenged students, will kickoff its second annual “Sponsor a Student” campaign on Wednesday, Oct. 20 at noon at Bishop McVinney School, 15 Gordon Ave., Providence.

Local business professionals will testify to the benefits they see of supporting Catholic education through the Anchor of Hope Fund, which has given out about $1.6 million in financial aid to students in the last year.

But, that amount represents only a fraction of the actual need being experienced by students and their families in paying for tuition.

“We’re only able to meet but eight to nine percent of the demonstrated need in the diocese,” said Edward Bastia, business administrator for the Catholic Schools Office.

Bastia said that it would take upwards of $17 million in order to meet all of the need reported by those applying for aid in the last year.

“My parents are really proud that I am succeeding in school and that I am doing my best,” said Kayla Falk, who has attended Blessed Sacrament School in Providence for nine years, and who has been receiving financial assistance from the Anchor of Hope Fund since the third grade.

“Without it, I wouldn’t be able to attend this school,” she said.

At the event, Bishop Thomas J. Tobin will gather for lunch with local business leaders whose efforts and contributions help to fund such scholarships.

After lunch, he will speak to the students on the importance of education, and will listen as students who have been helped by the fund offer testimonials about the difference a Catholic education has made in their lives.

“It’s an investment, you are investing in a child’s life,” said Samuel J. Ragosta, executive director of the Anchor of Hope Fund.

Following the speaking program, a Bishop McVinney student will lead guests on a tour of the inner city Catholic elementary school.