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Foundation Update

The Woodford House Foundation was founded in the School’s centennial year of 1994 with the purpose to pursue philanthropy, such that the special characteristics of the School could be enhanced and provided in perpetuity.


I have recently taken on the role of the Foundation Chairperson. We have strategically set a target to build the Foundation’s capital base to ensure more young girls continue to receive a world-class education at Woodford House for many years to come. The Foundation has close links and a strong working relationship with the Parents’ Association and the Old Girls’ Association.

In recent years, the Foundation has supported the School with the refurbishment of the Woodford Block, which included earthquake strengthening, upgrading boarding houses, renovating the kitchen and dining room, and establishing the Bernard L Chambers Founders’ Room. The Chapel also underwent major earthquake strengthening, which the Foundation supported financially. In addition, we have provided numerous scholarships to students.

In order to continue supporting the School, the Foundation seeks the encouragement of philanthropy from its community through bequests, gifts, and fundraising projects. We have recently completed our ‘Buy a Note’ campaign which raised over $40,000 where donors purchased a note in the school hymn. These donors will be honoured with a beautifully designed plaque in the new Dame Kate Harcourt Performing Arts Centre.

Our next initiative will be to celebrate the coming 125th Anniversary of Woodford House. The Foundation has decided to honour this important anniversary with a project that is both ambitious and practical, and that also celebrates our Founders, Past and Present Parents, Board Members, Staff and Students, by creating a Founders’ Walkway through the Woodford House grounds. There will be many opportunities to support the project in the months ahead, including the option to ‘Buy a Tree – the gift that keeps on growing’ that will become a permanent part of the planned walkway.

The Founder’s Walkway fundraising initiative will be launched with a celebratory Cocktail Party and Auction Evening on Saturday 1 December 2018 at the McHardy family’s Tauroa House in Havelock North. Tauroa House is an important part of Woodford House history as it originally belonged to Thomas Mason Chambers, one of the four Foundation Trustees of Woodford House. The gardens and house will be also open to the public during the day. We hope you will join us.

If you are able to offer an auction item or experience, or if your business is interested in becoming a corporate sponsor, we would love to hear from you: foundation@woodford.school.nz.

Ana Ward, Foundation Chair