UVic celebrates philanthropists

Jamie Cassels
Philanthropy Week is the time to celebrate UVic donors and volunteers

Your UVic Philanthropy Week (November 9-15, 2020) is a week-long showcase of philanthropy at UVic. Philanthropists are around us every day, giving their time, money or talent—often without recognition. Their actions permeate all areas of UVic life, benefitting not only our campus, but the wider community.

During Philanthropy Week, we celebrate those actions and the people behind them. Below are some examples highlighting students, staff, faculty, alumni and donors who are giving back through donations of time, money or expertise. 

You can participate by sharing your examples of UVic philanthropists and their good deeds. Give a shout out and tag the person’s name, using hashtag #UVicGivesBack, and we will add them to our Philanthropy Week highlight roll to share on November 15, National Philanthropy Day.


Celebrating student volunteers

"Being an international student, I felt very lonely in the beginning. Volunteering with UVic gave me an opportunity to make friends and provided me with a sense of contentment. I realized later that volunteering is not just beneficial for others, but for us as well, as it provides the feeling of empathy and the clarity one needs to move forward in life. It prepares you for a social world which focusses on doing the right thing without expecting anything in return."

Since coming to UVic, Kritika has volunteered with UVic international student orientation, the Peer Support Centre the UVic Indian Students' Association and AIESEc, as well as Giving Tuesday. She will be helping out again on December 1st for Giving Tuesday 2020!

Sandra and Claire Aitken

Celebrating donors to UVic

“My mother used to tell me that I was her legacy. This sentiment has impacted me immeasurably, and reinforced an important lesson I have learned in adulthood: your life is not just for yourself. The impact we can have on the lives of others is very real – and we have the ability to pay forward the good fortune we’ve experienced in our own lives.

The experience of creating this award made me realize that I would like our shared values and belief in education to continue beyond my lifetime as well. I am thankful to know I will leave behind a gift that will help change the lives of future UVic students.”

Claire Aitken (BFA '13 and BA '20) set up a graduate award at UVic in memory of her late mother, Sandra, and she has made a bequest to UVic in her will to continue that legacy.  

Stacy Ross
Stacy Ross

Celebrating alumni volunteers

"It's a no-brainer to help out at UVic however I can. Of course, it's fun, rewarding, and always involves amazing and inspiring people. As important, in my mind, is making the connection between students, alumni, and the community. We're all one big family here and the closer we are, the more successful we'll all be."

Stacy Ross (BFA '97) is the anchor of CHEK News at 5 and a valued alumni volunteer and past UVic Alumni Association board member. This spring she hosted UVic's first virtual alumni event. 

Plasma car races
The VPFO team

Celebrating staff fundraising teams

“We take part in the plasma car race, which is a goofy good time, but the rubber really hits the road when it’s time to unveil who raised the most for the United Way. The bulk of our fundraising comes from holding a silent auction. We love doing it because it’s a great way for us as an office to come together for a great cause in such a fun way.” - James Pepler, Project Officer for the Vice-President Finance & Operations.

Since 1994, UVic workplace campaigns have raised almost $5 million for the United Way. Each year staff teams find fun ways to raise money for a good cause.


Lafayette String quartet
The Lafayette String Quartet

Celebrating faculty sharing their expertise to create a legacy

“In our 34-year career together, the four of us have experienced many life curves, including health issues. Through hosting our annual free health forums and our career as a whole, we’ve also seen how music so greatly enhances our health.

We created a fund to support interdisciplinary research, teaching and community outreach in the area of music and health for many years to come. We are all seeking a healthy life and as we’ve found in our work as a string quartet, “What affects one of us, affects us all”.” - Pamela Highbaugh Aloni, Lafayette String Quartet.

The four members of UVic’s resident string quartet have established the Lafayette Health Awareness Series and Lafayette Music and Health Legacy Fund.

Joanna in her Bonnie Henry tshirt
Joanna's Bonnie Henry t-shirt

Celebrating staff who inspire others to give

“We wanted to our show appreciation for Dr. Henry, and celebrate the amazing female leader she has proven to be while raising money for an extremely mighty organization. I believe that the more you support the community and the more you build connection with the community, the stronger the community becomes.” – Joanna Witham, Donor Relations Coordinator, Advancement Services

In her spare time, Joanna and her friend created a Bonnie Henry t-shirt fundraiser that raised over $15,000 for the non-profit Rainbow Kitchen.