Alumnae Unite to rally graduates for fundraiser

Six Catholic high schools in the Archdiocese of Louisville are preparing for the fourth annual Alumnae Unite fundraiser, which will raise money for their annual funds.

The fundraiser will be held April 16 to 18.

Over the past six years, alumnae have raised more than $1.8 million for girls’ Catholic education, according to a news release from the schools. 

“Our goal is for each school to reach 20 percent alumnae participation and raise $300,000 for Catholic education, collectively, which we know is very ambitious yet attainable,” said Michelle Coke Farmer, executive director of advancement for Assumption High School. 

“We are fortunate to have such amazing alumnae, and it’s our hope that by setting these goals together that we can hold one another accountable, but also so that our alumnae see the importance of participating,” she said.

The fundraiser began with the all-girl schools — Assumption High School, Mercy Academy, Presentation Academy and Sacred Heart Academy — and was called #RivalsUnite4Girls fundraising challenge. Four years ago, Holy Cross and Bethlehem high schools joined in and the challenge was renamed Alumnae Unite.

In addition to raising money for girls’ education, the challenge also emphasizes alumnae participation.

At the completion of last year’s challenge, Mercy saw 15.93 percent of its alumnae donate to the school. Sacred Heart had 13.96 percent participation. Assumption placed third with 12.11 percent and Presentation was a close fourth with 12.4 percent of alumnae contributing. Holy Cross had 9.8 percent of its alumnae participate and Bethlehem closed out the group with 5 percent alumnae participation.

Elizabeth Ruwe, Presentation’s director of development, encouraged alumnae to participate.

“Consider your legacy and how your alma mater plays a part. Whether you are the latest in a long family line of graduates or the first in your family to attend a Catholic school, your high school helped make you the woman you are today,” Ruwe said. “You can honor your past and invest in the next generation of leaders through an Alumnae Unite gift.”

The 60-hour challenge will begin at noon April 16 and end at midnight April 18. However, all annual fund gifts made by alumnae since July 1, 2023, will count toward the final participation percentage for the respective schools, the release said.

All funds raised benefit the respective schools’ annual funds, which provide tuition aid and operational costs, said school leaders.

“The annual fund is our daily lifeline; it helps with operational costs as well as helping keep tuition affordable for all,” said Molly Mattingly, who serves as director of advancement at Bethlehem. 

Totals raised by each school this year will be released on April 23.

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