2020 definitely did not shape up as the year we all expected. From whisperings of a virus in Wuhan China in January, through to a Pandemic and its associated lockdowns and restrictions. For those of us who are lucky enough to live in Australia, we are seeing the damage that Covid19 is causing worldwide. The devastating loss of lives, the infection rates, through to the economic effects.
Though as a country, and for us as Victorians, we have not come away unscathed, I have never been more grateful to be an Australian.
To see our community come together to support and protect vulnerable Australians is incredible. Everyone experienced hardships; social separation from our loved ones, possible loss of employment and income, they may have been diagnosed with Covid, or experienced the passing of a loved one.
At Tintern we saw this generous community spirit expressed through our Annual giving campaign, Every Gift Counts. In this record breaking year we saw generous donations from our alumni, current and past families and staff, Community Groups and other school supporters. The gifts to the Bursary Fund through the Annual Giving directly supported current families who were experiencing financial hardship due to the Victorian Restrictions.
Taking in to consideration the financial pressures on our families, and that our full program was unable to transfer to a virtual environment, the Board authorised a scaled range of optional rebates on fees for Terms 2 and 3 this year. All families were given the option to redirect their fee rebates to the Tintern Grammar Bursary Fund. It is extremely pleasing to report more than 15% of our families chose to direct their rebate to the Bursary Fund.
We also launched the Tintern Grammar Scholarship Fund which aims to offer scholarships to new students, with the long-term goal of supporting scholarship recipients through a self-sustaining fund. In our 2020 campaign we received some very generous donations to the Scholarship Fund in honour of Henry Speagle, Life Governor, long-time friend and supporter of our School, who sadly passed away earlier this year. We are also very proud to announce we have confirmed future Bequests into this fund. We look forward to sharing more details with you in 2021.
As a school we have also seen the growth of many services, through innovation and creative problem solving as we have prepared and responded to the challenges of Covid19. Many of these exciting innovations will be incorporated in the future, to enhance the educational and community opportunities at Tintern.
These innovations have been seen throughout all industries. Bianca Jackson (Comfort, YG 2007) is a Psychologist and spoke to us about her own experience of seeing patients during Covid19, “Whilst many of my clients have experienced difficulties due to COVID-19, some have reported several unexpected positives such as improved relationships and connectedness, better work/life balance, and flexible access to services.”
We look forward to a new year, as we experience our new ‘Covid normal’. We have an exciting 2021 planned, with our normal Reunion program, including those postponed from 2020. To see the full list of dates please visit here.
Remember to to keep your details up to date, you can complete the form online here.
On behalf of Tintern Grammar, we would like to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and a safe and happy New Year. We look forward to once again welcoming you back to our onsite events.
If you have any questions or feedback, please contact either myself or Tegan Martin in Community Relations, via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone to 03 9845 7777.
Alumni and Community Relations Manager