Priorities for annual giving to 30 June 2022
Dr Elizabeth Kiss (Virginia & Balliol 1983), Warden of Rhodes House, sets out below the needs of Scholars and the priorities for the Scholars Fund for the remainder of the financial year.
Your generosity will have an impact on Scholars by ensuring they have the support they need to thrive at Oxford. Because we are a relatively small alumni community of just 5,000, I can assure you that your contribution, of any amount, is important and will make a difference.
Rising Scholar Costs
The cost of living and studying in Oxford has risen dramatically in recent years, with significant increases in visa costs, rents, and other areas. The NHS health surcharge for international students has tripled since it was introduced in 2015 and now costs the Trust up to £700 per Scholar per year. Alumni giving ensures that the Trust not only keeps up with these increases, but is also able to provide more individualised support enabling Scholars with diverse backgrounds or needs to thrive.
The generosity of donors allows me to invest in the wellbeing of Scholars so they can fulfil the potential our selectors saw in them. Demand for mental health care grew significantly during the pandemic and donor funds were used to access private counselling. Wellbeing funds have also been used to provide assistance for travel home for bereavement, other family emergencies and medical costs not available through the NHS.
Time at Oxford is a precious gift, full of opportunities. Additional funding is often required, for example for essential fieldwork for M.Phil. and D.Phil. projects, or travel to academic conferences. The discretionary support available from colleges and departments is uneven and therefore the Scholars Fund is used to ensure equity of access to these opportunities among Scholars. Alumni giving is also invested in the Character, Service and Leadership Programme which brings Scholars together for annual retreats to inspire reflection on how to build a purposeful life.
Our Goal for the Year to 30 June 2022
Our goal is to raise £900,000 in unrestricted gifts for the Scholars Fund by 30 June. Alumni around the world have so far donated £516,000 this year, leaving £384,000 still to raise. Whatever you can give, your gift will help us reach the goal.
The Need for Unrestricted Annual Giving
The Trust’s endowment – recapitalised thanks largely to alumni giving - is sufficient to meet tuition fees and stipends while preserving long-term value. New initiatives, such as the building work at Rhodes House, or opening the Scholarship to more countries, are funded separately.
Annual contributions to the Scholars Fund allow us to meet Scholar support needs, develop the Scholar experience, and be responsive to circumstances as they arise through the year such as the pandemic. 100% of the Scholars Fund is ring-fenced for the benefit of Scholars in Residence and donations are pooled to meet the needs of all Scholars.
Why Your Gift is Important
As a relatively small alumni community your donation will make a difference. Gifts range from a few pounds to several thousand. Whatever you can give, the value of your gift is felt strongly in two ways:
- Through the collective impact of pooled donations
- Because the percentage of alumni giving any amount is a metric used by many external donors, such as foundations, in assessing the Scholarships for support
First-time gifts are always especially welcome and impactful! Just over half of all living Rhodes Scholars have made a gift to the Trust and we would love to raise that level further.
Please also consider how much you could commit on a monthly or annual basis.
Tax-effective Giving in Nine Countries
If your country is not listed, or if you simply want to give online by credit/debit card regardless of tax receipt, choose the UK option.
I give because I want to ensure Scholars are able to thrive in Oxford regardless of their personal circumstances.
Dr Alyssa Fitzpatrick
(South Australia & Magdalen 2013)
I give because the Scholarship gave me so much, and because I'm convinced Rhodes Scholars contribute a great deal to the world's fight.
Dr Eboo Patel
(Illinois & Lady Margaret Hall 1998)
I give because I was fortunate to be given a life changing opportunity and feel it is the right thing to do so that to others can be given the same opportunity.
(South Africa-at-Large & St Catherine's 2010)