The power of legacy giving

Gifts in wills are an important source of funding for all charitable organisations, and in this St John’s is no exception. Legacies, however modest or magnificent, enable donors to remember St John’s alongside their loved ones, often by giving sums which would not have been possible during their lifetimes. A growing number of alumni and friends are choosing to do this: their generosity and forethought will play an important part in helping to secure many aspects of the College’s operations for generations to come. 

The Kendrew Funds were bequeathed to the College by Sir John Kendrew, a distinguished scientist, Nobel Prize winner, and former President. In keeping with the spirit of Sir John’s international and humanitarian concerns, the funds are offered to a worldwide field of applicants from economically less developed countries, more specifically to students who are from countries whose Gross National Product (GNP) falls outside the highest 25% of countries in the world. Below, we hear from Helio Cuve, a current holder of the Kendrew Scholarship and DPhil Candidate in Experimental Psychology.

Helio CuveBeing the first person with a higher education degree in my family, I will never take for granted the fact that the Kendrew Scholarship allowed me to accept my place at St John’s.  Thanks to the generous support fromthe donors to the Kendrew Fund and Clarendon Fund, I have been able to fully immerse myself in my work and pursue my ambition to contribute to our scientific understanding of human emotions and behaviour. 

I am striving to have a positive impact on how we understand and treat neuropsychiatric conditions through my DPhil research investigating visual and physiological processes implicated in emotion and face processing diffculties, and this would not be possible without my scholarship. Not only has this scholarship given me the financial means to be able to study and live in Oxford, it has also provided me with a rich academic and social network that has had an immensely positive impact on my experience at Oxford. 

I am very grateful to everyone who continues to donate to the College. I hope that you can continue to believe and invest in making the scholarship pool more diverse, and would like to thank you for your continued support.

" Not only has this scholarship given me the financial means to be able to study and live in Oxford, it has also provided me with a rich academic and social network that has had an immensely positive impact on my experience at Oxford. " Helio Cuve (Experimental Psychology, 2018)

Paula Aamli (née Poyer, Modern History, 1992) worked in the third sector before moving to her current role at HSBC. She tells us why she’s including a gift to St John’s in her will. 

Paula Aamli.jpgAccess to high quality education absolutely transformed the opportunities for my family. My dad’s father was a coal miner while my mum was the first female in her family to complete her high school education. They both hold doctorates in Chemistry and encouraged me and my brother to pursue our own educational interests, in the humanities. I was the first in the family to study at Oxford – closely followed by my brother, three years later! I have always been keen on initiatives that widen access or make it more practical for people from diverse and less privileged backgrounds to study, both to develop themselves and also so that a wider range of people have chances to contribute in furthering human knowledge. 

When I was thinking of updating my will last year, one of the factors that meant I chose to include St John’s was that I could specify for the gift to be applied for particular purposes. My bequest will certainly not be big enough to be a fund in its own right, but I am giving towards the Hardship Fund and towards initiatives for widening access to the college. 

I have always been keen on initiatives that widen access or make it more practical for people from diverse and less privileged backgrounds to study, both to develop themselves and also so that a wider range of people have chances to contribute in furthering human knowledge.

" I have always been keen on initiatives that widen access or make it more practical for people from diverse and less privileged backgrounds to study " Paula Aamli (1992, Modern History)

There are a number of ways in which you can recognise St John’s in your will, and the method you choose will depend on your circumstances. The most common form of legacy is a specified sum of money, but it is also possible to donate a specific asset, a percentage of your estate, or its residuary after gifts to other people or charities. 

As St John’s is a registered UK charity, there are a number of tax advantages in including a gift to the College in your will. Click here if you would like further information on leaving a legacy, or to discuss these options, please contact the Development Office by emailing or calling 01865 610 885

The College is particularly grateful to those who choose to give in this way, and strongly encourages you to let us know if you have included a provision for the College in your will so that we can thank you appropriately. The Rawlinson Society exists to recognise all those who have informed St John’s that they have kindly remembered the College in their will. St John’s holds an annual event to thank members for supporting the College in this special way.