Why Make A Gift?

Why should I make a gift?

It is unfortunate but true that Benenden does not have any significant endowment or reserve. It is similar to many other girls’ schools in this respect; its reputation and achievements constantly equal, or exceed, those of many independent co-educational or boys’ schools with vastly greater financial resources.

Benenden’s fees are amongst the highest in the country – doesn’t the School have more than enough money?

No. Fee income pays for Benenden as it is today, with only 10p in the school fee £ left over or future investment in new capital projects or other new learning or living initiatives.

Why are Benenden’s fees so high?

Many leading independent schools in the UK have two sources of income: endowment derived over many, many years AND fee income. But Benenden is almost entirely dependent on fee income alone.

If you stripped out the endowment of public schools, many would be running at a significant annual loss. Benenden manages to balance its books and re-invest a very modest surplus back into improving its infrastructure.

When I think of giving to charity, I think of the needy, like the sick or homeless. How do you justify fundraising for what some see as a bastion of privilege?

Any model for creating a successful society depends on giving its citizens the best possible education. The education Benenden provides will enable its pupils to become valuable members of society, in the workplace and at home – and through their education make a positive difference to the world around them.

Benenden already recognises educational excellence through scholarships and provides some help for families that cannot afford today’s fee levels. However, the scope of this help is limited and the amounts available only modest. With a more substantial endowment of its own Benenden would be able to offer more scholarships and bursaries to families who couldn’t otherwise afford the fees.

I’m a Benenden parent – I already pay huge school fees – why should I give any more?

Benenden already offers an education comparable to leading boys’ schools but has significantly smaller financial means at its disposal. Without the gifts and generosity of previous generations your daughter would not be enjoying facilities such as The All-Weather Pitch and Pavilion, The Science Centre and Eugenia Leung Library, the Theatre, Fitness Gym or SPLASH. Additional fundraising is essential so that Benenden can continue to provide the best possible education for your daughter and future generations.

If I give something I want to know where my gift is going. If I’ve made a gift to support Science, how do I know the money hasn’t gone on a new running track?

The School’s development plan outlines the key areas of expenditure for Benenden. You have a choice as to which of these areas you would like to support – including the all-weather pitch, new staff accommodation, the School Hall and the Trust Award programme.

Benenden will work hard to keep you informed and up-to-date about the benefits your gift has made to the community.

Why does Benenden need to keep spending money – doesn’t it have enough grand facilities?

The development plan is the result of much careful debate within the School and Council. Benenden’s achievements are many and its pupils constantly amaze and delight in so many ways. This plan envisages significant further investment in people, policies and facilities to ensure that Benenden maintains its ability to offer the very best education possible for years to come.

It is also a sad fact that schools that fail to make significant investment in their infrastructures gradually experience recruitment difficulties, and many eventually close.

I’m a Benenden Senior and left the School years ago. Why should I give any money?

Benenden has done – and continues to – do its best to provide a life-long benefit to every girl it educates. We hope that the benefits you received from Benenden are constant and continuous. Your gift will help ensure the successful future of your old School, and the success of the next generation of Benenden Seniors.

Also, Benenden is devoting more resources to you and other Seniors, through investment in new communications, and a wider programme of support and networking events.

I’ve given before – why should I give again?

We are enormously grateful to you for your continued support. Only sustained support will ensure Benenden’s future success.