Thompson Island Exceeds Capital Campaign Goal

Thompson Island Exceeds Capital Campaign Goal

Begins enhancing facilities to expand education programs for Boston youth

BOSTON (June 1, 2015) – Thompson Island Outward Bound Education Center is pleased to announce that it has raised $8.35 million in a three-year capital and endowment campaign, allowing the organization to increase its capacity to provide unique out-of-school learning opportunities to Boston youth. The organization exceeded the original goal by $250,000.

Specifically, funds raised from the “Expanding the Impact” campaign will enable Thompson Island to: 1) serve more students – improving facilities in order to lengthen the operating season from six to nine months, and doubling the capacity for overnight programs; 2) increase earned revenue – enhancing the island’s conference and wedding facilities that allow the organization to generate stable funding for its youth programs; and 3) preserve Thompson Island for future generations – earmarking $1 million to launch a specific endowment fund for infrastructure.

“We are profoundly grateful to the many donors who deepened their investment in our organization during this exciting time in our history,” said President and CEO Arthur Pearson. “They know that for many young people, coming to Thompson Island is the first time stepping on a boat, doing hands-on science at a salt marsh, completing a ropes course. With our increased capacity, young people will have the opportunity to come to Thompson Island over and over again, taking on more and more challenging work, learning and affirming skills they’ll bring back to the classroom and use throughout their lives.”

The 246 philanthropists who made the campaign possible include individuals who donated anywhere from $10 to $900,000; foundations and corporations that invested $25,000 to $1 million; and family members who gave in honor of loved ones who had long histories with Thompson Island. Several such gifts were made in honor of Guido Perera, an outdoorsman, passionate educator and philanthropist who served on the organization’s board for 50 years.

Despite this year’s harsh winter, occasionally making it impossible to break through ice and reach the Island, capital improvements are close to completion. The electrical and heating systems have been rebuilt, which will expand overnight capacity and allow the operating season to extend to nine months.  Structural and masonry improvements to Gardner Hall, housing classrooms since 1881, will protect the oldest continuously operating building on the Boston Harbor Islands.

To learn more about the campaign please click here.

– more –

About Thompson Island Outward Bound Education Center
Each year, Thompson Island serves 6,500 youth from greater Boston with adventurous, rigorous learning experiences that accelerate both academic and social-emotional growth. From a multi-year STEM curriculum to sailing expeditions to summer jobs, time spent on Thompson Island is expanded learning that works, laying the groundwork for children’s success in the classroom, workplace and community.

Founded to serve youth in 1833, and now working with students, teachers and school systems, the 204-acre Thompson Island is a local and national treasure located just one mile from downtown Boston. To augment the impact of philanthropic investments, Thompson Island manages a conference center and unique event facilities that allow the community to enjoy the island while supporting its youth programming. For more information, visit