At our inception, the long-term goal for FWMR was to fundraise for a boathouse in Williamsburg. Upon successful completion of the Tack Family Boathouse in 2011, we have shifted our attention to another extended fundraising campaign: the Friends of W&M Rowing Endowment Fund. The goal of the Endowment Fund is to provide a permanent and steady stream of income which can be used by W&M Club Rowing to purchase equipment and cover operating costs.
Donations to the Endowment Fund are invested for the long-term benefit of W&M Club Rowing, with only a set percentage disbursed annually to support W&M Club Rowing. The Endowment Fund is currently invested in a mix of exchange-traded-funds (“ETFs”) which are designed to provide market returns while minimizing expenses. Currently, FWMR uses Wealthfront, an automated investment service, to manage the portfolio of ETFs as outlined during our 2014 annual meeting.
In order to reach meaningful scale, we have not yet begun disbursements from the Endowment Fund and are maintaining all donations and investment earnings until the Fund reaches $50,000. Thereafter, FWMR and W&M Club Rowing will formalize the long-term goals for the Endowment Fund and the desired proportion of the Fund to be disbursed annually. We expect to disburse 5% annually, which based on our initial goal of $50,000, will provide approximately $2,500 of support for W&M Club Rowing annually. For context, that is nearly enough for one new set of oars, new two Model E Ergs, or five new cox boxes!
Rowing is an expensive sport, particularly in regards to equipment and while we haven’t yet finalized the end-goal of the Endowment Fund, we know that we want the Fund to support a large portion of W&M Club Rowing’s operating costs and equipment needs. Therefore, in the long-term, we see the Endowment Fund growing to $1,000,000 or more, which would provide annual support to W&M Club Rowing of at least $50,000 at a 5% disbursement rate. This would provide funds to cover coaches salaries or purchase a new 8+ or 4+ every year plus additional equipment such as oars, coaches launches, etc. Imagine how fast the W&M fleet would be with that level of annual support!!
One advantage of donating to this fund is that it allows your gift to have a lasting impact for years into the future. One-time donations can be made below. You can even designate your monthly subscriptions to this goal!