These are gifts that are typically made annually by alumni and friends in response to direct-mail appeals, phone calls, or via online giving. Many of these gifts are then matched by the donor's employer through corporate matching gift programs.
Annual gifts generally support the Advancement Fund (or discretionary fund) for the particular UH campus, college or program to which the annual gift was made. These gifts — the highest priority gifts — provide the chancellor, dean or director with much-needed operating funds that augment state funds and tuition dollars. Occasionally, donors designate their annual gifts for specific purposes, such as scholarship assistance, faculty development, or technology improvements.
The University of Hawaiʻi System is experiencing declining revenue from state and federal sources, resulting in reduced operating budgets throughout the 10 campuses. State funds and tuition dollars alone fail to meet the budget needs of a campus, college or program.
Annual gifts augment state funds and tuition dollars and not only help maintain existing programs, but enhance them and allow for the planning and implementation of promising new programs.
Everyone — students, faculty, staff, alumni, parents, and the community — benefits from annual gifts made to UH. The funds provided by annual gifts allow chancellors, deans, and directors to take advantage of a wide variety of opportunities such as:
- providing scholarship assistance to bright and deserving students,
- bringing visiting lecturers to UH campuses to speak with the campus and local community,
- sending faculty members to conferences and other professional-development opportunities,
- enhancing athletic and co-curricular student activities,
- making technology and facilities improvements.
Without annual gifts, many of the above opportunities would otherwise be lost.
Annual gifts can be made through direct-mail appeals, phone pledges, and online giving.
Each year, the UH Foundation, on behalf of the various campuses, colleges, and programs of the UH System, mails a solicitation to the alumni and friends of that particular UH unit. These letters allow the chancellor, dean or director to write to his or her alumni and friends to provide an update and to solicit support for that unit. Each year, thousands of donors respond to these direct-mail appeals.
The Annual Giving Student Calling Center employs UH students who are well-trained and eager to reach out to alumni and friends of the various UH programs to update them on what is happening at their UH campus, college or program, answer questions the alum or friend may have and to ask for their financial support for that UH unit. Most UH alumni enjoy the opportunity to speak with a current student and find the phone call a rewarding experience. Last year, students of the Calling Center enjoyed speaking with more than 46,000 UH alumni and friends resulting in over $1.1 million in gift pledges.
Unlike direct-mail appeals and the Student Calling Center where we are reaching out to you, most online gifts come from alumni and friends who visit our website to make a secure credit card gift and support the UH college, campus or program of their choice. Online gifts are also the most cost-efficient method to make an annual gift as the UH Foundation foregoes expenses related to mailings or phone calls.
Make an online gift now
Many corporations have Matching Gift programs where a corporation will match gifts their employees make to qualified charities (including the UH Foundation). Matching Gift policies vary from company to company, so please check with your Human Resources Office to see if your employer matches charitable gifts. Many companies will also match charitable gifts of their retirees and employee spouses.
You determine where you want your gift to go — you select the UH campus, college or program that you want to benefit from your annual gift. Many Annual Giving donors support multiple UH campuses, colleges, and programs.
You can also decide to make an undesignated gift, which will then benefit the UH Fund for Excellence. The fund supports the student callers who work to raise private gifts on behalf of the university and Annual Giving campaigns at the UH Foundation. These programs raise funds for all 10 campuses of the UH System.
Annual gifts can be made any day of the year — and thanks to online giving, any time of the day or night. The university's fiscal year is July 1 through June 30 and the Office of Annual Giving uses this fiscal year when determining giving in a particular year.
Typically, once you make an annual gift to a particular campus, college or program, the Office of Annual Giving won't contact you regarding another gift to that program for the remainder of the fiscal year. Therefore, making annual gifts early in the fiscal year leads to less mail and few or no phone calls from the Office of Annual Giving.
A small portion of all gifts to the University of Hawaiʻi Foundation is used to defray the cost of administering and raising private funds for the University of Hawaiʻi.