Torch - Spring 2017

Advancement & Community Relations

Paying It Forward By Hailey Eisen

The Simpson family (from left to right): Debbie, Abbie, Oliver and Colin.

W hen Abbie Simpson started Junior Kindergarten at Havergal, she was not quite four years old. And, as her mother Debbie recalls, it was the first day of school and she was wearing a uniform that looked like it would fit her in Middle School. “We’d always admired Havergal,” says the mother of two and CFO of Maple Leaf Foods, “but what really attracted us to it back then was the combination of this wonderful school with great character and resources right in the middle of the city, surrounded by beautiful, expansive outdoor space.” Abbie, who is now in Grade 5, loves to access the outdoors, where she and her classmates have a variety of space for sports, hanging out and free play. Abbie particularly likes how her teachers use their outdoor space as a natural extension of the classroom and their studies. In fact, when the Simpson family made a contribution to Havergal’s Limitless Campaign earlier this year, Abbie selected the Quilted Garden, the stunning natural space outside the Upper School, to be named in her family’s honour.

The Simpsons were among the first families to contribute to the capital campaign, which aims to raise $21 million—the school’s largest fundraising effort in more than a decade—to support major enhancements to the facilities in the Junior and Upper Schools, including both the renovation of existing spaces and the construction of new ones. “We are delighted that these enhancements—which are expected to be completed in time for the school’s 125th anniversary in 2019— will contribute to a more inspiring learning environment for the girls by enhancing connectivity between the various subjects, the indoor and outdoor spaces and the technology that brings it all to life,” says Debbie. As Tony diCosmo, Havergal’s Executive Director of Advancement & Community Relations, explains: “These enhancements will help continue to develop our students’ abilities to think critically and encourage cross-disciplinary thinking.” The idea is that the new spaces will support our key areas of development to fulfill our vision


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