The Hartsbrook School

Support Hartsbrook

Teacher

Why I Support The Hartsbrook School:

I would like to tell you why I support The Hartsbrook School as a grateful alumni parent, along with many other alumni parents who join me in supporting the school’s educational vision.

I share this request with you as a fellow alumni parent.  When our daughter, Jacqui, was four years old, we started looking for a school for her.  Coming from a background of systems thinking and the experience of teaching young adults at the university level, where holistic thinking had seemed to be educated out of them, we knew we were looking for three criteria: 1) a place she could truly be a child as long as she needed (not being forced to be analytical too soon, which we saw in so many schools and institutions), 2) a place where her natural inborn holistic understanding of the world around her would be supported and developed as opposed to reduced and 3) we wanted her to be fearless.

After a full year of searching every school we could find in the Austin area, we stumbled upon the Austin Waldorf School through a ‘chance’ encounter.  The moment we stepped on campus, we knew Waldorf was the answer for our family. Moving to the present, Jacqui graduated from Hartsbrook High School three years ago.  When students enter the High School, they bring a wild flower and say to the attentive audience of students, teachers and parents what they are bringing to the school.  We had talked the night before, and she had come up with a couple of ideas I can’t even remember now, but when she placed her sunflower in the vase, she stopped a moment, looked out and said, “I am bringing fearlessness.”  My husband and I burst into tears – a common occurrence for us at Waldorf school events.

This past June, our youngest, Conor, graduated from Hartsbrook High School, and so reflecting on this journey through Waldorf education comes naturally. I stand in awe at both of my children for their thoughtfulness, their intelligence, their graceful poise, self-confidence and their fearlessness in meeting the world.

In thinking about giving and why we support Hartsbrook, I was thinking about the definition of support itself and how we all come together to support each other in this endeavor of raising our children the best we can. Over the past 17 years, because of various circumstances we have been at the Austin Waldorf School, at Pine Hill in southern New Hampshire and for the last six years here at Hartsbrook. I have given to and supported Waldorf education and Hartsbrook in many ways. Through tuition, of course, and the very important Annual Giving, but also through a whole, wonderfully-wide variety of volunteer activities throughout the years. I could look back and see all that time, money and volunteer work through the lens of a value exchange. The value of the education, but also the value of participating in this amazing community with its sense of the village, helping me to raise my children.

Leslie Ritchie-Dunham, Board member and Alumni Parent

The Importance of Philanthropy:

Philanthropy is a vital component to the success of The Hartsbrook School. Because of our community’s generous support, our school can continue its mission of nurturing the unique spirit of each child with robust hands-on programs from early childhood through high school.

Through joy in learning, kinship with nature, and working in community, we prepare students to meet the challenges of the future and to find purpose and direction in their lives. We cannot do it without you!

As a non-profit organization, we fully fund all of our programs, facilities, and curriculum and depend on the support of our extended community to continue to grow and thrive. There are many ways to give to The Hartsbrook School. Your gifts of time, sharing your expertise and professional skills, and gifts of financial support are always held in the highest honor by our school.

Donations to The Hartsbrook School are tax deductible. The school’s Tax ID is 042 734 173.

To offer your support for the school, or to obtain more information, please call Pilar Schmidt, Director of Development, at (413) 586-1908, ext. 129, or email her at pschmidt@hartsbrook.org. For contributions sent through U.S. Mail, please address them to:

The Hartsbrook School
Development Office
193 Bay Road
Hadley, MA 01035

Act Now

Donate Online

Set Up a Recurring Gift

Download a Pledge Form (PDF)

Stock-gift-instructions-Hartsbrook (PDF)