By Jose Lopez, Staff Writer
Established in August 2012, the Adopt a Student letter campaign is an important annual initiative that provides for Verbum Dei High School’s maintenance, both literally and figuratively. Donations are very important, and benefactors play a significant role in the school financial sustainability. This campaign is being managed by the Mission Advancement Department staff under the leadership of Paul Hosch, Vice President of Mission Advancement.
The purpose of the Adopt a Student letter according to Stephanie Andrade, Associate Director of Mission Advancement, is “to ask the people of the program to donate again by sending them a student letter.”
This campaign’s overall goal is to be able to cover one-fourth of the school’s expenditures. Thanks to the successful campaign, the retention rate of donors has remained stable; 86% of donors returned to support the school from the 2018-2019 school year.
Two letters are sent to the donors at the same time, one of them written by a Verb student and the other letter written by Mission Advancement staff. The latter letter provides an update of upcoming events to the donor, and the former expresses the gratitude, goals, and extra-curricular activities of a student.
According to Hosch and Andrade, last year’s goal of $650,000 was accomplished; this year’s goal is to generate $750,000 from the campaign. The money that is gathered is allocated to general school operation and maintenance.
Every donor is treated equally in terms of gratitude; however, some donors receive more information due to their being genuinely interested in what happens at school.
In addition to such campaigns, Hosch and Andrade occasionally personally undertake what is called a Major Gift, where they meet with a donor and ask for a specific amount of money for the school.
“Next week we will be asking a donor for $500,000,” said Hosch. This will be a very important meet up, said Hosch on October 9.