Class Funds at Havergal
Class Funds at Havergal provided $180,000 in support of various key areas in the 2021–22 academic year. And, over the years, approximately $6 million has been raised by classes. For 125 years, current Havergal students have benefited from the support of those who came before them. This culture of philanthropy that transcends generations is in large part due to the legacy of Class Funds that dates back more than 70 years. The Class Fund program speaks to the commitment of the community—at any given time in history—to empower girls to reach their full potential.
Of the many traditions at Havergal, Grad Class Giving is one that has stood the test of time. Since 1949, Havergal students and their families have committed time and financial resources to create programs and services through Class Funds that honour the legacy of the class and create critical funding to key areas of need. There are about 75 individual Class Funds that support top priorities and have significant impact on the daily lives of students, helping to shape Havergal as a leader in girls’ education, empowerment and leadership.
Havergal Class Giving is not unlike other academic institutions, where a small and close-knit group of students comes together in support of a focused goal. Where there is a deep belief in the area of designation—such as student financial assistance, wellbeing programming, the arts, athletics or academics—Class Funds are launched with a profound commitment from the class and provide an ongoing meaningful opportunity for continued support by alumni.
After graduation, each class is represented by a group of determined and dedicated Old Girls/alums who have remained steadfast in their commitment to engage, update and involve classmates after graduation. Together with Havergal faculty and staff, students tirelessly and passionately find consensus from their classmates in determining the area of support for their fund. As graduates, they continue to work with Havergal staff to ensure the growth and focus of their Class Fund. These Class Rep volunteers are the backbone of many of the impactful activities that one might see happening at Havergal today.
In business schools and many other academic environments where classes have been smaller and more close-knit, or where students have come together around a focused area of study, Class Giving tends to flourish. The funds are predicated on a deep belief in the area of designation or focus such as an award for leadership, financial assistance or science and technology. Class Funds help set a tone for what has been important to students at that time and remains important to those very students who are now alums. This specific program and focus by Havergal, its students, alums, parents and other family members are integral aspects with both functional and cultural significance. The establishment and disbursement of funds to support areas such as financial assistance, the arts or wellbeing offer encouragement, empowerment, access and opportunity to those who benefit. It speaks to backing from a community of supporters rallying to confirm their belief in girls and their bright futures. From a cultural standpoint, these funds are a chronicle of what has been important to students and classes at that time in history that aids forward-thinking, seals what might always need to be important to Havergal and, ultimately, names issues that transcend time.
Philanthropy and volunteerism also go hand in hand. Most of the time, “philanthropy” is synonymous with “fundraising.” No one argues that volunteering is technically interwoven with donating, but giving of time may not always be considered as valuable as financial resource development.
People who raise money and people who raise time should plan together on a regular basis. If you are going to ask for donations from volunteers and ask donors to give time, it is critical that all such appeals be done with the involvement of both areas.
The impact of volunteerism generates a ripple effect of goodwill, community education and other long-range benefits. The key is acknowledging how a person already contributes to an organization and making sure the new appeal is presented as one more option for support, as well as to strengthen a person’s engagement. Having multiple pathways to give back increases empowerment.
Over time, the Class Funds have supported current and necessary improvements and innovations that have stood the test of time and allowed Havergal to stay up-to-date and on the leading edge of girls’ education.
Published April 2023