Seward Community Foundation is excited to announce a new fund: The Seavey Fund for Outdoor Education and Recreation. Dan Seavey established the fund with an initial $25,000 donation and plans to match that amount again in the next tax year. The endowment’s purpose is to fund outdoor education and recreational programs in the Seward area.
In addition, Dan wants this fund to be a memorial to Shirley, his wife of 59 years and matriarch of the Seavey clan. Shirley passed in 2017 at the age of 78. Shirley was the mother of Mitchell, Tracie, and Darian. Dan figures that supporting future projects is a fitting memorial to Shirley, who steadfastly supported the family’s passions in the outdoors.
Dan also said he wanted an opportunity to give back to the area that had supported him in his “dog mushing nonsense.” Dan and his family are avid and highly successful dog mushers. In 2016, Dan was inducted into the Iditarod Hall of Fame for his work as a patriarch, a pioneer, and a preservationist for the Iditarod. In addition, Dan is the Iditarod Trail Blazers founder, a local nonprofit dedicated to establishing a physical trail from Seward into the Interior.
In Seward, Dan was known as the teacher of history at the high school for 20 years. His passion for survival skills lead him to establish the first outdoor education program on the Kenai Peninsula. He developed a program for Seward high school students to teach them skills necessary to live remotely without the conveniences of home. So successful was his program that one year the senior trip was camping in Denali for a week.
Dan hopes this endowed fund will encourage other outdoor educational and recreational programs in the Seward/Moose Pass area and continue this passion far into the future.
Endowed funds mean that only the interest, not the initial investment, is granted to qualified organizations. This means that there will be funds to support the causes defined by the cr
eator forever. The minimum deposit to endow a fund is $25,000.
The mantra of the Seward Community Foundation is to connect people with causes they care about. Dan’s newly created fund and Ralph and Anne Hatches’ recently endowed fund supporting Arts and Music Education illustrate this philosophy of the Seward Community Foundation. The funds reflect the passion of the individual who initially established the fund. SCF has a variety of restricted funds that provide grants to specific types of activities. Anyone can donate to any of these funds, which would increase the endowment. The larger the fund becomes, the greater amount of earnings are available for grantmaking.
Dan hopes you will consider assisting his efforts in supporting future outdoor education and recreation programs by donating to the Seavey Fund for Outdoor Education and Recreation. Donations to the Seavey Fund can be made HERE.
By Marc Swanson, SCF Advisory Board Member