RIC Campus Police officers put down their razors for cancer awareness

Alexis Rapoza

News Editor

Photo via RIC campus police

PROVIDENCE, R.I., -- Rhode Island College Campus Police Officers joined other officers and first responders across the country who put down their razors for the entire month of November. The RIC officers participated in No Shave November in order to raise money for children and their families who are suffering from cancer.


RIC Campus Police raised a total of $1,025 throughout the month of November that was ultimately donated to The Tomorrow Fund. Campus Police presented Tomorrow Fund Executive Director, Lisa Abbenante with the check on December 4.


The Tomorrow Fund was founded in 1985 with the goal to “ease the traumatic financial and emotional stress of childhood cancer.” The organization is the only nonprofit that provides daily financial and emotional support to children with cancer and their families who are being treated at Hasbro Children’s Hospital in Providence.


James Mendonca, who is Chief of Campus Police at RIC, previously served as police chief in Central Falls. Chief Mendonca told The Anchor that it was Officer Kevin Roca who “was the catalyst behind this benevolence.” He said, “I believe he knew about my willingness to allow officers to put down their razors for the month of November from my time as police chief in Central Falls. As such, his proposal was met with immediate approval.”


Officer Kevin Roca said, “It was an honor organizing the department’s first No-Shave November, I appreciate Colonel Mendonca approving my proposal and for the officer’s enthusiasm to participate.”


Chief Mendonca says that because No-Shave November is a month-long campaign to raise funds and awareness for cancer prevention, research and education The Tomorrow Fund was “an obvious choice.”


Roca said the decision to donate proceeds to The Tomorrow Fund was made because RIC Campus Police “strives for community involvement and wanted to support and partner with a local charity in Providence.” He said, “Being such a small department and raising over $1,000 is such a huge accomplishment and shows our department’s willingness to come together and support such a great cause.”


No-Shave November is a movement that has been a tradition for decades. In 2009, the Hill family from Chicago launched a reinvention of the tradition to raise money for cancer research and awareness in honor of their father, Matthew Hill, who passed away from colon cancer in 2007. The No-Shave November website says, “We promise to keep raising money for cancer prevention, education, and research and to let that hair grow in the process. We want every participant to embrace their hair for the many cancer patients that lose theirs due to vigorous treatments. We believe that together, anything is possible, and we’ll get closer to eradicating cancer one whisker at a time!”


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