Annual giving is the financial life-blood of any school. Simply put, the Annual Fund is the best way possible for parents, alumni, parishioners, grandparents, parents of alumni and friends to help make a financial difference in the future of St. Cecilia School. The Annual Fund is the basis of a comprehensive Advancement Program. It helps to sustain operating expenses and enhances the programs and services offered to students and faculty. Traditionally, strong institutions have strong annual funds. Catholic elementary schools should be no different than any other school, college or university. An annual gift to the operating budget is a tangible vote of confidence in your school’s total program.
Why is the Annual Fund necessary?
St. Cecilia School needs and deserves your support. Our Annual Fund is necessary to sustain the life of the school through enriched academic programs, faculty development and enhancements to technology. Tuition cannot cover all the goals we strive to achieve. Therefore, a charitable tax deductible Annual Fund gift gives the best opportunity for everyone to support our efforts at St. Cecilia School. Truly, an Annual Fund gift is a vote of confidence for the faculty, staff, board, volunteers and all who are trying their best for St. Cecilia School.
Why not just raise tuition, rather than solicit gifts?
Although raising tuition is necessary each year, because of our need to increase faculty salaries and to generate a certain level of revenue, we know it will not solve the ongoing needs the school faces. In reality, to generate the total support necessary to meet our cost to educate each child, we would have to increase our tuition in excess of $1,200 to cover the overall operating costs. To avoid this, most schools (including public schools) and other non-profits rely on an annual giving model to sustain their programs. This affords an opportunity for all constituencies: parents, alumni, parishioners, grandparents, parents of alumni and friends to support the mission and vision of the school at a level that is comfortable to them on an annual basis. It also provides a tax deductible charitable gift opportunity for each donor.
Isn't my support of the fundraisers enough?
The monies generated through fundraisers helps to support the current operating needs of the school — but does not offer anywhere near the support we need to meet all we are striving to achieve for our children at St. Cecilia School.
Who is being asked to participate?
All constituencies are asked to make an annual gift: board members, faculty, staff, parents, parishioners, grandparents, alumni, parents of alumni and friends.
What are the Giving Clubs?
The various Giving Clubs are a method or approach to securing a number of gifts at all levels. If our Annual Fund is to be successful, it must reflect the balance between leadership gifts and broad spectrum participation. Giving Clubs provide an opportunity for all donors to be recognized and acknowledged at the level of their generosity to St. Cecilia School. We expect different gifts from different people — but gifts from everyone.
How long do I have to pay my commitment?
The Annual Fund has been designed to afford donors an opportunity to pay their commitment on an annual basis any time before June 30 of the current school year. Installment giving provides a vehicle for each donor to maximize their gift by scheduling their contribution in smaller and more convenient increments. The school will mail a commitment reminder to you in advance of any installment you may have chosen.
What are Matching Gifts and will I get credit for them with my commitment to the school?
Matching Gifts are gifts an employer will give annually to an educational institution or other non-profits as an employee benefit. They match the gift given by an employee on a 1:1, 2:1 or 3:1 basis. In the Annual Fund, we will give full credit to the donor for any gift they make, as well as any match their employer makes. In many cases, this can be a wonderful way to increase your gift to a higher gift society. For example, a gift of $500 from a donor, matched by their employer on a 1:1 basis for an additional $500, will credit the donor with a $1,000 gift to St. Cecilia School and they would become a member of the St. Cecilia Society rather than an Educator’s Circle. Simply ask the human resources department about their Matching Gift Program, forward the form along with your gift and St. Cecilia School will do the rest. Your spouse may qualify for a matching gift as well. Also, some companies such as ExxonMobil, will give the school a grant for volunteer hours worked at the school. The best thing to do is ask your Human Resources deparment for information on qualifying gifts.
Is my donation tax deductible?
Yes. Gifts to St. Cecilia School are tax deductible to the fullest extent provided by law and may be made in the form of cash, check, credit card or stock transfer.
At a time when there are many requests for your charitable dollar, you may ask, “Why give to St. Cecilia School?” The answer is simply this: St. Cecilia School is worth your additional investment because what could be more important than a child’s education — your child’s education? Your gift to St. Cecilia School will continue the tradition of a quality Catholic education for many years to come!