Harvard faculty, staff, and retirees pledged a record-breaking $966,400 to local charities through this year’s Community Gifts through Harvard Campaign, surpassing last year’s mark by more than $95,000.
The annual drive, which benefits local charities through both one-time donations and regular paycheck withdrawals, also surpassed its $915,000 goal and beat last year’s mark by 11 percent.
Paul Grogan, vice president for Government, Community and Public Affairs, and campaign chair, also applauded the Harvard community for its support.
“It was an extremely positive campaign,” Grogan said. “We surpassed our target by 6 percent, and there is a potential to do much more. I hope more people will join this campaign in the future.”
The single largest recipient of donations from Harvard faculty, staff, and retirees was the United Way of Massachusetts Bay, which received $506,185 in donations and pledges. That was 52 percent of the total donated and an 11 percent increase over last year. Harvard gave more than any other educational institution in their campaign.
Other Boston-area and national charities collectively received $460,215, of which $83,925 will go directly to 91 Cambridge charities, and $227,562 will go to 215 Boston-area charities. Harvard emeritus faculty and retirees contributed $44,533 through the campaign.
Harvard Associate Director of Community Relations Mary Ann Jarvis, who served as manager of the campaign, said the variety of charitable organizations chosen is as diverse as the Harvard community itself.
“Donors seem to appreciate the fact that they can target their funds to their interests,” Jarvis said.
The Community Gifts Campaign benefits more than 750 charitable organizations. After the United Way of Massachusetts Bay, the most popular charities were Community Works, Rosie’s Place, Shelter Inc., Horizons Initiative, Planned Parenthood, AIDS Action Committee, Combined Jewish Philanthropies, Victory Programs, Literacy Volunteers of Massachusetts, Phillips Brooks House, Catholic Charities, and the American Cancer Society.