Launched in September 2006, the Beacon of Hope Scholarship Fund provides students from financially struggling families with tuition assistance at the Catholic Schools in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany.
It's a great start. But it's not near enough to meet the need.
The Beacon of Hope Diocesan Scholarship Committee receives an average of 240 applications per year. The committee has a nearly impossible task: to select around 10 percent of those applicants as the recipients of the scholarship. Year after year, it is evident that nearly every student that applies needs and deserves tuition assistance. Their parents sacrifice whatever they have to in order to send their children to Catholic school; working several jobs, devoting countless hours to the school, relying on the help of extended family members, and even going into debt.
In addition to their evident financial challenges, the common sentiment expressed by all of the applicants' parents and guardians - regardless of race, gender or religion - is the hope, faith and happiness their children receive at a Catholic school.
To only accept students whose families can pay the full tuition would be an injustice to those that desire a Catholic Education but simply do not have the means. It is already out of reach for so many. No child should be left behind, not as a result of federal legislation but because all children, regardless of where they live or their background, deserve the very best. And they can find that within Catholic schools.
Through the Beacon of Hope Scholarship Fund, we are not only helping families today, we are helping to shape the families of tomorrow.
How the Beacon of Hope Scholarship is Funded
Beacon of Hope is primarily funded by individuals with support from corporations and foundations. 100% of all contributions go directly to tuition assistance, with no administrative costs.