dsc_0046 Senior Jarell Gomes well-represented Saint Raphael Academy when he was invited to share how the Anchor of Hope Fund has helped his family with his Catholic education at a special presentation at Saint Paul School in Cranston last week. Because of the fund, Jarell has had the opportunity to excel at Saint Raphael Academy; he is an honor student, plays on the soccer team, and enjoys acting in drama productions.

Jarell especially recognized the caring community at Saints: “It doesn’t matter how you come to school—happy or sad—there is always someone to talk to.”

Inspired by his mother, who has worked as nurse at Memorial and Rhode Island Hospitals for more than 30 years, Jarell hopes to become a pediatrician and plans to begin his pre-med program in Boston. He told the donors present at the presentation that, “If I become a pediatrician, I won’t be able to help nearly the amount of kids that you can help here [with your donations].”

The goal of the Anchor of Hope Fund is to help working families afford a Catholic education. With the average annual secondary school tuition in Rhode Island totaling nearly $13,000, the annual qualified need among applicants for aid in the state is more than $23 million.


Bishop Thomas Tobin speaks with SRA senior Jarell Gomes.

The luncheon presentation marked the relaunch of the Anchor of Hope Fund by the Diocese of Providence and featured several speakers, including Bishop Thomas Tobin and Superintendent of Catholic Schools Daniel Ferris, who expressed the significance of the fund.

“Anchor of Hope is so important. It does make a difference to our students.” said Mr. Ferris.

The Anchor of Hope Fund not only helps families, but it also helps communities, as students in Catholic schools give back countless hours of community service, fundraise for worthy charities, and participate in food drives. At Saint Raphael Academy, by the time each student is a senior, he/she will have given at least 60 hours of community service (and often even more), donated food for Thanksgiving baskets, and contributed funds for our sister school in Kenya.

“We are grateful to those who have supported Catholic schools over the years,” said Bishop Tobin. “It makes a lasting difference in our communities.”


Jarell Gomes ’17 with SRA alum Rev. William Ledoux ’84 of St. Mary’s Church in Cranston.


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