Generosity and the BK Annual Fund
By now most of you should have received a request from Bishop Kelly to participate in our Annual Fund. I want to take some time and echo the article that appeared in the recent BK Roundtable Magazine and help you understand how important the Annual Fund is to our community and the mission of our school.
As I have cited in earlier blog posts, the “BK Way” represents the culture we all developed for the BK community. One of the key elements of the BK Way is Generosity. We define Generosity as “Students, staff and parents give back generously of their time, talent and treasure in ways that are productive to their fellow man.” So how does the BK Annual Fund fit within our desired culture?
The Bishop Kelly annual fund is a planned yearly drive designed to involve the entire BK family in the ministry of Catholic education at Bishop Kelly. The Annual Fund ensures that Bishop Kelly is able to provide the quality and variety of spiritual, academic, co-curricular, and extracurricular programs that give each student the opportunity to fulfill their potential. Every component of a Bishop Kelly education will be served by a successful annual fund; thus, every student and program benefits from the Annual Fund. Additionally, the Annual Fund allows each of us to designate our gift to the Bishop Kelly Foundation or to specific capital projects or programs. The Annual Fund will also be used as a vehicle to identify those who have already, or are interested in, remembering Bishop Kelly in their estate planning.
The Bishop Kelly Annual Fund is designed to move our community away from the mentality of our current culture of fundraising toward a culture of philanthropy. The vision is that over time, the number of fundraisers will diminish, leaving the annual fund as the primary non-tuition revenue source used to bridge the gap between the cost to educate a student and the tuition revenue. This shift will allow coaches and program leaders to coach and lead programs without having to be distracted by constantly running fundraisers. It places responsibility on the development office to produce the non-tuition revenue necessary to keep our tuition reasonable and fund our programs adequately. Most importantly, the Annual Fund is centered on our benefactors, providing options to give and receive consistent and coordinated communication and recognition from BK. It eliminates the “every program for itself” approach that causes our benefactors to be inundated with requests to participate in one of our many fundraisers. For Bishop Kelly, it channels all the philanthropic power of our community through one budget and allows donated funds to be aligned with the school’s priorities as outlined in the Strategic Plan. This approach is not new, rather it is the norm in high functioning Catholic high schools. It really is the next step for us to grow and progress.
Here in summary are the desired outcomes of our Annual Fund:
Create a culture of philanthropy and increase the number of parents, past parents, alumni and friends who support Bishop Kelly with an annual gift.
- Allow coaches and program leaders to coach, teach, and lead without having to fundraise.
- Appropriately recognize all who are donating.
- Inform the BK Family of the cost of operating Bishop Kelly and the importance of non-tuition revenue.
- Adequately fund academic and athletic programs.
- Pay employee wages and benefits that allow Bishop Kelly to compete for and retain the best faculty and staff in the local market.
- Provide funds for professional development of our faculty.
- Underwrite capital building programs.
- Keep Bishop Kelly affordable by providing financial aid to all families that need help to attend.
- Grow the Bishop Kelly Foundation endowment and the Foundation’s endowed scholarships.
If you have any questions, please contact me or Mark Jaszkowski in the Development Office and we will be happy to assist you. And, please respond generously as you have always in the past to our Annual Fund and help us grow forward together.