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View From Vis: Why We Give
In this month's blog post, Director of Advancement Anne Kane shares some of the many reasons Visitation School means so much to our donors – and why our donors mean so much to Visitation.
Why We Give
In my office, I have a box of what I call "love letters" – notes from parents, alumnae/i and friends who want to share just how much Visitation has meant to them. These notes always fill my heart, and sometimes I find myself looking through them for a welcome reminder of how Visitation's daily work is valued and appreciated by so many.
These notes also give a glimpse into the numerous reasons people support Visitation with their time, their talents and their monetary gifts. Some donors tell us that giving to Visitation is a way for them to give back to a community that has meant so much to them – that has shaped them in their homes, their communities, their universities and their workplaces. Others feel their contributions are a way to demonstrate a commitment to our students who will go out and shape their worlds with a foundation of Salesian principles and wisdom – and with a desire to be good and do good for others. Their gifts are gifts of joyful optimism.
Many of our donors give to Visitation because of their connection to this place, whether they went to school on Fairmount Avenue or here at our current Mendota Heights location. We often remind our students that it is a privilege for them to attend school in the Sisters' home, and, as such, they need to treat our building and grounds with care and responsibility. But the truth is that Visitation is more than a home for the Sisters; it is a home for our students, too. Vis is a home that is often in their hearts, and students take the spirit of Vis everywhere they go – even decades after they have graduated.
Some people tell me the reason they give is to to create new opportunities for our teachers to "think big," and, by extension, to give students the chance to engage in big ideas. Donor contributions go a long way in supporting our faculty, our rigorous curriculum, our technology and facilities – from the STEM Center to the outdoor classroom, and our students' exposure to the world beyond the classroom. In addition, monetary gifts help make a Visitation education accessible to as many families as possible. We are a stronger community when we are a more accessible community.
Donations sustain the independent, Catholic, Salesian tradition here at Visitation – the very foundation of who we are. Your gifts support the religion curriculum, the Salesian Center, the living legacy of the Sisters, Campus Ministry and the school's myriad service components, through which students learn to shape, impact and lovingly contribute to the future.
Visitation is blessed by those who do not know any students personally but who still give because they believe in the power of our students and the impact they will have on our world. Alumnae/i who have long-since graduated from Visitation give. Parents and grandparents of alumnae/i give. Our Trustees, students, parents, faculty and staff give. Our community's faithful generosity speaks to the strength of the relationships we build here and the power of the "not for school but for life" component of a Vis education.
So please consider this post my little love note to you. Thank you for sharing your time, talent and treasure with us. Thank you for contributing to Vis Give Day on November 14. Thank you for your using your gifts to celebrate Visitation, the Sisters, the excellent education we offer, our faculty, our students and the future of our school. Visitation is a place people feel deeply connected to. With your help and your ongoing love, together we will make sure those living traditions and connections continue for another 145 years.