Wellington Scoop

Making a difference: VUW aims to raise $150m from philanthropy

News from VUW
Te Herenga Waka — Victoria University of Wellington has launched its most ambitious philanthropic fundraising campaign to date, with a goal of reaching $150 million by 2022.

The ‘What if…’ campaign will support University strategic initiatives which make a difference on a local, national and global scale: funding scholarships, research and innovation, societal outreach, capital projects and teaching and learning.

Key campaign initiatives have already seen success, including $4 million raised towards Great Futures scholarships and $18 million towards the planned national music centre. Other initiatives, including the Living Pā, a planned major redevelopment of the University’s marae precinct, the Centre for Women’s Health Research, and the Innovate Fund, have recently been launched.

The 2022 date was chosen to celebrate 125 years of excellence since the University’s founding. Since 2011, philanthropy has been accelerating at the University. In 2018, the University received $32 million in philanthropic funds — bringing the total raised to $108 million towards the final goal of $150 million.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Grant Guilford says, “Our ambition is in keeping with the world-class quality of our institution and our determination to make a prominent contribution to the betterment of our society. This campaign presents an exciting vision for change and will advance the work the University undertakes every day to resolve some of the most pressing challenges facing Aotearoa New Zealand and the world.”

Referring to the amount raised to date, Patricia Danver, Executive Director of the University’s Development Office, says: “We are immensely grateful to our community of supporters. Philanthropic support greatly enhances the University’s capacity to make a difference at a greater scale and greater speed.”

Since 1990 the Victoria University of Wellington Foundation has managed philanthropic gifts and stewarded the endowment in support of the University’s teaching and research mission and to maximise the impact of donations through effective and ethical investment strategies.

Craig Stevens, Foundation Chair says: “Philanthropic gifts to the University have changed lives here in New Zealand and around the globe. The Foundation is proud to partner with donors to hold gifts in trust and ensure gifts to the campaign will have the greatest impact. Your support assists the University in making change for great causes.”

Find out more about the campaign at www.whatif.ac.nz